Clippers’ Jordan brings added defensive strength

Jay Asser 09:37 31/10/2015
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Making his mark: DeAndre Jordan.

DeAndre Jordan has been a defensive force in the early stages of the season for the Los Angeles Clippers as they’ve begun the new campaign perfect with two wins.

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Jordan’s scoring has been sparse, but his impact in the paint by swatting shots and grabbing rebounds has fuelled the Clippers. The centre was particularly energised in the match-up with the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday, with six points, 15 rebounds, four blocks and two assists in 26 minutes as the Clippers won 104-88.

Jordan, of course, was almost a Maverick when he agreed to terms with the franchise to end his free agency in the summer, only to later change his mind and rejoin Los Angeles as his courting turned into a spectacle.

“It’s definitely an emotional game,” Jordan said of playing against Dallas. “The emotions were high obviously because it was our home opener. We wanted to give the fans what they missed.”

The only area Jordan didn’t hurt the Mavericks in was at the free throw line, where he went just 2-of-8 as Dallas intentionally fouled him at times.

Jordan’s off-season decision has poured petrol on the rivalry flames between the two teams, with Mavericks owner Mark Cuban taking shots before the team’s first meeting of the season.

Cuban claimed he “didn’t give a s*** about the Clippers,” while adding: “Look, the Clippers are the Clippers. You can change the players, you can change the owner, but the Clippers are who they’ve been for the last 30 years.”

Although, Dallas have the 2011 championship on Los Angeles, the Clippers have finished higher in the standings the past four years.

Jordan and his team-mates will expectedly get a hostile welcome when the teams meet again in Dallas on November 11.

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