Clippers’ Jamal Crawford encouraged to take his shot

first_imgLOS ANGELES >> Doc Rivers had seen enough on Wednesday night and he was hell-bent on getting Jamal Crawford to shoot the basketball.After watching his high-scoring reserve tiptoe through the first three quarters of the game, the Clippers coach drew up a play that would ensure Crawford would have to launch up a shot.“He literally had to shoot,” Rivers said. “There was no one else there.”With Crawford as the first, second, third, fourth and fifth option on the play, the Clippers sprung him off a screen and without hesitation, he fired up one of his high-arcing 3-point shots. He drew the foul and made all three free throws. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Crawford didn’t look comfortable for most of Wednesday’s game, hesitating to shoot the shots he normally takes, turning the ball over by trying to create too much for his teammates.“Jamal’s so talented that he’ll start being a passer and setting people up because he doesn’t feel it,” Rivers said. “And, we need him to shoot.”Crawford said the indecision was a result of “thinking too much.”“Tonight was one of those nights,” he said.And, to combat those nights, Rivers will draw up more plays. The Clippers won’t shy away from asking Crawford to shoot – they might even do it more often.“That’s what we do,” Rivers said.And, there’s comfort in that – which is probably the point.“All my teammates are saying, ‘Be more aggressive.’ Doc’s saying, ‘Stop thinking. Just play,’” Crawford said. “That definitely makes you more comfortable, having that support.”center_img “He needed to see the ball go in. He’d been struggling of late, and you know it’s not going to last with Jamal, but the ball going in for him was really good for him,” Rivers said after the Clippers beat the Magic on Wednesday. “…That’s how you get your shot going.”The Clippers desperately want to get Crawford going, knowing how important he is to their long-term goals. Over the last eight games, he’s averaging only 9.0 points while his jumper has gone ice cold. He’s made only 28.9 percent from the field and 19.2 percent from 3 over that same stretch.This season, Crawford is averaging 12.7 points and 2.7 assists per game.Crawford has admitted to finding his sweet spot with this roster that includes a much-improved bench with players who you can classify as “scorers” at four of the five positions in the normal second unit.“It’s just different. Out of all my years here, instead of me just attacking, it’s a whole unit attacking,” Crawford said. “It’s the most people with the same mindset. It’s another challenge, but I accept it because it’s better for the team. “last_img

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