Will new ownership produce a better product on the floor for the Clippers?

Posted by Ben Parker on Thursday, August 21, 2014 with No comments

Earlier this month, Steve Ballmer officially became the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers which subsequently marked the dawning of a new era of Los Angeles Clippers basketball. While the arrival of Steve Ballmer and the departure of Donald Sterling is exciting for the Clippers, will this change actually produce a better product on the floor?

I don't mean to curb the enthusiasm of Clippers fans, but they need to understand why it is that they are excited before they go insane like Ballmer did at the most recent Clippers rally. If Clippers fans want to say they are excited purely on the grounds that they can finally cheer for their team in good conscience, then they have every reason to be excited. But if they are excited because they think a championship is just around the corner, they may be in for some disappointment. 


I don't deny that having Steve Ballmer as their new owner is a good thing for the Clippers organization. I think it's a great thing for the organization, but not because I think it will result in the Clippers winning more basketball games. If you look at the team that they have on the floor right now, it isn't clear how much better they can really get. 

They have a top flight coach in Doc Rivers, the best point guard in the NBA in Chris Paul, and one of the top five best power forwards in the game in Blake Griffin. Not only that, but they have quality players around those two guys with DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Hawes, J.J. Redick, and Jamal Crawford. 

The Clippers right now are as good as they ever have been, and ironically, the building of this strong team was under the stewardship of Donald Sterling and not Steve Ballmer. Of course, with all the losing that the Sterling era went through, it stands to reason that Clippers fans can expect to see a more consistently competitive product on the floor, but that doesn't mean the product will be any better than what it presently is. 

If you look at this Clippers team, there really is not way to improve the team other than having Blake Griffin and Chris Paul get better as a duo. Ultimately, that will come down to those two players working on their game and perhaps some of the instruction they get from Doc Rivers. Steve Ballmer has zero control over how much better Chris Paul and Blake Griffin get and he also can't do much to better the roster since I really think the roster they have is as good as it can possibly be. 

At the end of the day, I don't see Steve Ballmer producing a better product on the floor for the Clippers. They may get better and eventually win a championship, but it won't be because Steve Ballmer arrived. His arrival energizes the fan base and gives people in Los Angeles better reason to cheer for the Clippers, which in and of itself makes his arrival a great thing for the Clippers. However,  I think it is important we clarify that and not make the mistake of thinking that the Clippers are suddenly going to win a championship because they got new ownership. 

---Ben Parker: follow me on twitter @nba_lord