Posted this in the NBA thread just now, and Like I said a page or two back, I'm much more optimistic about this team than I was when we were 7-8.
Mainly because of the defense. We still have trouble rebounding but we are defending much better. This is probably the best defensive team in the Doc Rivers era and it's making me a believer.
Clips obviously have trouble closing out games this year, but they've held fourth quarter leads against SAS, Twice against GSW, and was a victim to a game winner against OKC that the league ruled shouldn't have counted. In the three games that we've played Houston this year, two of them we either didn't have blake or CP, and the other was on a back to back after playing SAS.
Obviously we didn't win those games so there's something to be said there, but we are not that far away from the elite to me. Maybe it's my homer bias but I genuinely don't think we are. Would I pick us in a 7 gamer against GSW or SAS right now? No, but we aren't a finished product and still don't know what our rotations are going to be come playoff time. Could be a completely different story come playoff time.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Or we could be bounced in the first round by the Mavs or Grizz, because that would be the 100% Clipper thing to do.