The combination of injuries to their best two players could lead the Los Angeles Clippers to become sellers ahead of the deadline. Paul George sustained a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. Kawhi Leonard is rehabbing a torn ACL.
The front office of the Clippers approached Steve Ballmer this past offseason about treating this 21-22 season as more of "a gap year," league sources told Bleacher Report, and Ballmer gave his approval. This strategy has become called the "Warriors model" in which a contending team uses star injuries as an opportunity to reset.
The Clippers, however, owe their unprotected pick in 2022 to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
"They're pretty much open for business for anyone except their main guys and Terance Mann. I think they really are fine falling out of the playoffs and regrouping for next year," said one Western Conference official. "I think they're trying to shed the Marcus Morrises of the world, guys that have some value and maybe can replace them with younger talent, maybe cheaper [contracts], to free them to get someone else this summer."