The Return of Lob City
February 5, 2018
After a mixed bag of promising and disappointing seasons, the Clippers decided to change half of the up-tempo, alley-oop-heavy equation, dealing veteran floor general Chris Paul away to the Rockets. Surprisingly, the Lob City dynamics are back and arguably better than before.
Fans could be forgiven for thinking that the Los Angeles Clippers have entered rebuilding mode, after trading away their star point guard for a handful of young players this off-season. Instead, the high-flying front court duo of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan are back on nightly highlight reels, thanks in no small part to the passing and vision of one of the League’s oldest rookies ever – the mercurial Milos Teodosic.
Despite a small setback in the form of a foot injury, the 30-year old has shown that he deserves his place in the NBA, after more than a decade of dominance in Europe. Overwhelming voted by NBA General Managers as the best player not in the NBA last season, Teodosic is winning over fans of the Clippers’ fast-paced offense. Perhaps the best tributes to his passing abilities come from his teammates and not just in the form of verbal compliments. The Clippers are a team that is guilty at times of excessive isolation play, but just tune into any game with Teodosic on the floor and you will see that his teammates run that much harder and the ball moves that much quicker. There is a plethora of pure scorers on the team, and they are well aware that they only have to get to their spots and the ball will naturally end up in their hands.
So if you have yet to see Teodosic suit up for the Clippers, you are in for a treat. The shaggy-haired Serbian hardly looks like one of the top playmakers in the game today, with his non chalant demeanour and (at times) non-existent defense and athleticism. Watch closer however, and you will find that the newest member of Lob City is teaching a valuable lesson in basketball: that it can be played on a higher plane with not just your body, but your mind. As Teodosic succinctly puts it, “Basketball is not about how fast your legs can move, but how fast your brain can move.”
Article written by Wong Chin Yi. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the NBA.