It wasn’t too long ago that the saga in Houston was breaking the Internet. DeAndre Jordan promising that he would sign with the Dallas Mavericks had a change of heart, surrounded by his Los Angeles Clipper companions. Jordan backed out on his promise and inked with the Clippers, partly because of the promise of an expanded scoring role.
So it was appropriate, and perhaps a sing of things to come when Jordan opened up the scored the first points of the preseason when he was on the finishing end of this pass after a Paul Pierce steal.
— NBA (@NBA) October 3, 2015
Just for fun, he added this later:
I missed you https://t.co/99Vs9KzniW
— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) October 3, 2015
Jordan finished the night with 15 points, 12 boards and three blocks in just 26 minutes.
As to the results, the Clippers starters excelled, as they did last year, but the much-discussed bench fell short of expectations in their inaugural game. They were outscored 63-57 by the Nuggets’ bench in spite of the fact they attempted 50 field goals to the Nuggets’ 43 and 18 free throws to 17.
In particular. Lance Stephenson and Josh Smith—both with potential to miss many, many shots—were a combined 7-23 on the night. The bench collapse nearly cost the Clippers the game, but they held on for one last push and closed it out 103-96.
In sum: New Jordan looked good; the new bench did not.