Patrick Beverley, Clippers go hard on the boards and it pays off

first_imgBEVERLEY FINED $25,000The NBA announced Wednesday afternoon that it had fined Beverley $25,000 for flinging the ball into the stands after the buzzer of Tuesday’s victory.After slapping hands with Harrell, Beverley held the ball as the final few seconds of the victory ticked down. Then, instead of handing it off to the referee standing beside him, he sent an underhand fling skyward, seemingly a celebratory act – for which he was charged Wednesday.Beverley also was tagged with a $25,000 fine last season, when he bounced a ball toward a fan who shouted obscenities about Beverley’s mother. The fan reportedly later was banned following an investigation into the incident.At the Clippers’ preseason media day, Beverley – who collected 14 technical fouls last year, tied for third-most in the NBA – said he planned to avoid those sorts of infractions this season.“My behavior’s changed,” the 31-year-old guard said. “You guys want me to be this guy in the corner … acting crazy. But I’m trying to harness that because that does affect me. Those are the types of things we don’t want, so trying to control that.”HARKLESS DEFENSIVE SEMINARThe Clippers made a couple of key trades this offseason.Related Articles LOS ANGELES — Like their neighbors down the hall, the Clippers went into Tuesday’s season opener seeking to downplay its emotional significance. Doc Rivers’ players did, however, peel back the curtain far enough to let the world in on another obvious concern: rebounding.The Lakers’ bigs they were up against – 6-foot-10 Anthony Davis, 7-0 JaVale McGee and 6-10 Dwight Howard – present a challenge on the glass for any team, but seemingly especially for a Clippers’ squad that averaged 41.6 rebounds per game in the preseason, the fewest among NBA teams.So as plainly meaningful as Tuesday’s game was, so too was it clear that the Clippers’ centers, 7-1 Ivica Zubac and 6-8 Montrezl Harrell, would need backup on the boards.“We’ve talked about that a lot,” Clippers guard Landry Shamet said at shootaround. “We can’t stand and watch from the perimeter, we’ve got to be able to rebound as a team, all five of us. Rebound and box out if they’re in a compromising situation. That’s been a point of emphasis.” Yes, there was the blockbuster that brought in Paul George – and the four-team trade that delivered Moe Harkless (and a 2023 draft pick, which soon was offered to Oklahoma City as part of the haul for George) from Portland.Harkless, whose defensive reputation preceded him, made a fine first impression this preseason, shooting 55.6 percent from the field and 44.4 percent from 3-point range. In addition to 10 points on 4-of-7 shooting Tuesday, the 6-7 forward finished with four steals, two blocked shots and played cunning defense on the much taller Davis.“I just kind of mess with him,” Harkless explained. “Front him sometimes, half-front him sometimes, make them think I’m gonna be real physical, and as soon as they pass the ball just let him go.“It’s just you gotta figure out ways to mess with guys like that. He’s big, he’s long, so once he gets the ball it’s a different challenge. I just try to do my work early and make it tough to catch, that makes it easier when he does actually get the ball.” Clippers vs. Mavericks Game 5 playoff updates from NBA beat reporters Kristaps Porzingis ruled out as Clippers, Mavericks set for Game 5; Follow for game updates Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 But it was more determination than serendipity.“One of the biggest plays of the game was (Beverley’s) offensive rebound on the free throw,” Rivers said of the sequence with 3:10 left when Beverley out-jumped James for an offensive board off Harrell’s missed foul shot. That rebound kept possession with the Clippers and set up a three-point play five seconds later when Harrell made good on his next free-throw attempt to increase the lead to 110-99.“(Beverley), he has so much grit in him, and fight,” Rivers said. “He actually believes he should be rebounding, which is just Pat Beverley.”Harrell appreciated the effort: “We made a big emphasis on that all week long and the guards did a tremendous job on it, coming over over the back and helping us rebound. It played a big part of our winning.” The Clippers – locked in, hungry and apparently attentive to the scouting report – won the rebounding battle 45-41, and not coincidentally, also won the first skirmish in this season’s Battle for L.A. 112-102.The Lakers got 10 rebounds from Davis and nine from LeBron James. McGee finished with two and Howard had six.Harrell had seven boards and Zubac one, but the Clippers guards and wings – led by 6-1 Patrick Beverley’s 10 rebounds – came crashing, as assigned. Lou Williams (five) and Shamet (three) contributed, as did Kawhi Leonard (six) and Moe Harkless (four).“I just knew Trezz and Zu and JaMychal (Green) and Pat Patterson, they’re so busy battling with A.D. and Bron and all those type of guys, I just tried to come in and get those loose ones,” said Beverley, who has pulled down 10 or more rebounds 24 times in his career.“I guess the ball kind of fell in my hands.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img