Four-Pointer: Previewing the Los Angeles Clippers

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Lob City rolls into Big D for the first Clips-Mavs matchup of the season.

What did the Clippers do over the summer?

Well, the Clips didn't give the Mavs or any other team time to breathe in Chris Paul's direction, locking him up to a five year deal. To keep their superstar happy, they said adios to Vinny Del Negro and managed to snag Doc Rivers from the Celtics in a crazy back and forth "Is it dead or alive?" series of events, in exchange for a draft pick. A trade with the Suns sent Eric Bledsoe to Phoenix (ugh, thanks guys) and brought Jared Dudley and J.J. Redick to the Clips.

Oh, and you might have heard of the Clippers' replacement for Bledsoe, one Darren Collison, again reunited with Chris Paul.

What have the Clippers done lately?

The Clips come into AAC sporting a 22-12 record, good for a comfortable fourth in the Western Conference. They're without J.J. Redick, and have struggled a bit recently without him (more on that in our Q&A with Clips Nation later today). They handled the Bobcats pretty easily on their New Year's Day matchup, but they've also had recent losses to the Warriors, Trail Blazers and Suns. (WHY SUNS WHY DO YOU HAVE TO BE GOOD?)

Which Clippers player might be due for a big game?

Ugh, Chris Paul, probably. From what I can tell he's been quiet (for him) in the past few games. I certainly haven't seen any of the normal "OMG CP3" tweets I seem to see a lot. If the Mavs come out shooting, and they should, let's hope Point God Mode doesn't get going. (Also receiving consideration: Darren Collison, in the classic "I'll show you, Rick Carlisle" revenge game.)

Which team stat might determine the game?

Three point shooting. The Mavs have it (8th in the league in three point percentage), the Clippers don't (26th). It seems like we say it ad nauseum this season, but when the Mavs' shooting is on, they can outscore anyone. The Clips are especially vulnerable here, so hopefully Calderon keeps his A game sharp tonight and the Mavs can muster up some defense on the perimeter.

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