Through the Feb. 7 trade deadline, the Clippers had a defensive rating of 110.2, the 19th-best mark in the league. But over the past 13 games with Zubac at starting center, the team has posted a 108.8 defensive rating, the 11th-best figure in the league. Before their 125-104 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday, the Clippers were a top-seven defense with Zubac. “We have a rim-protector. Bottom line,” Doc Rivers said. “Trezz does it at times. But Zu is a true rim-protector, and Zu has been great at it. So that’s why (we’ve improved).”
May 18, 2019 | 9:05 pm EDT Update
For now it is all speculation, but there were anonymous whispers asking if it was true that the Knicks and Durant had already held a secret meeting, that a handshake deal was already in place and that endorsement deals were already ironed out. It wasn’t just talk about the Knicks securing the services of Durant, but that the elite scorer is bolting the Warriors despite all of the success. No one would put a name on their thoughts, but they did at least in their minds, figure out the hardest part of the Durant free agency question: why would he leave the Warriors?