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Clippers' Vinny Del Negro wants to change reserve approach

The coach is considering leaving at least one starter on the court when he brings in his second unit.

March 31, 2012|By Broderick Turner
  • Clippers big men Kenyon Martin, left, and Reggie Evans celebrate after Evans scored on an offensive rebound against the Hawks earlier this season.
Clippers big men Kenyon Martin, left, and Reggie Evans celebrate after… (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

There have been times when Clippers Coach Vinny Del Negro has played five of his reserves on the court together.

Recently, it hasn't worked out too well.

So Del Negro said he has considered changing his approach and perhaps leaving at least one of his starters on the court with the second unit.

The idea of having either Chris Paul or Blake Griffin on the court with the reserves is something Del Negro said he thinks could help the quality of play with his reserves.

"I would like to do that a little bit more," Del Negro said. "We've been getting off to pretty good first-quarter starts, and I like to let those guys [the starters] kind of finish the quarters out, but I'd like to try to keep one of them on the court at all times, probably with maybe Caron [Butler] or Randy [Foye] to give us some more stability with that second unit."

Del Negro likes what reserves Kenyon Martin, Reggie Evans, Nick Young, Eric Bledsoe and Bobby Simmons bring.

But that group has struggled at times to protect leads.

So in order to help them be more productive, Del Negro said having one of his starters on the court with some of the reserves might serve the team better.

"That's something we talk about a lot," Del Negro said. "It doesn't always work out that way, depending on foul trouble, who is going well in the flow of the game. But, yes, I would like to do that more."

Young is the one Del Negro wants to provide more offense.

"He's just got to get comfortable and play a little bit," Del Negro said. "We need to try to get Nick some more reps and some more touches with the second unit and try to alleviate some of our scoring issues with that unit a little bit."

Evans clarifies his relationship with Martin

Evans wanted to emphatically set the record straight about his relationship with Martin.

"Man, me and 'Kmart' is good," Evans said. "We have not ever had no altercation."

Evans said he had to respond to an Internet report that said he and Martin were at odds with each other.

Evans said it was not true and that he is upset about it.

He said that he has been invited to Martin's house to have dinner with Martin's mother.

"I wouldn't be doing all that if we had beef," Evans said. "Ain't no beef whatsoever. I don't know why somebody would even say something like that. But that's what girls do."


Del Negro said the team doctor checked out Chauncey Billups (season-ending left Achilles' injury) and Mo Williams (sprained left big toe) on Friday and that both guards "are feeling better."

Williams will play after he starts running, but there was no timetable for that.

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