Through 23 games, the LA Clippers’ lineup of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Danilo Gallinari and Marcin Gortat is the best in the NBA.
It is a little over the quarter mark in the season and just as we all predicted, the LA Clippers boast the best lineup in the NBA.
Yes, you are reading that correctly. (Shout out to Brian Sieman for pointing this out!) Of lineups that have played over 100 minutes together, the following lineup has the best Net Rating in the league:
If you have not been paying attention to the Clips for some reason, it’s worth pointing out that this unit has been the starting lineup for 6 of the last 7 games.
The biggest surprise about this list is that it does include both Gortat and Bradley who have caught a lot of slack from fans this season. Gortat has been about what we expected and is logging only 17.5 minutes per game.
Bradley started the season in a rough spot before becoming injured, but has since bounced back on both ends of the court. If he is scoring effectively, this lineup becomes very, very dangerous.
This is evident by the fact that this unit has the highest offensive rating in the league by over 4 rating points. Tobias Harris has been electric and has earned the Western Conference Player of the Month award. Gallinari has also looked amazing and Shai has thoroughly impressed the league and might be considered the best guard out of this draft if it weren’t for some kid in Dallas.
The capability of these two wings to both play down low has also been a big benefit. While Gortat isn’t a great defender, he’s usually capable at hanging with most centers and should he get switched, both Gallinari and Harris have the size to hold their own.
Bradley has long been regarded as one of the better perimeter defenders in the league and Shai’s size and length have made him a threat already. The team’s defensive rating isn’t great, but is good enough. In this modern NBA, that is all you can really ask for.
Many may also be surprised that the Clippers best lineup does not include Montrezl Harrell nor Lou Williams, however with the fluidity of the team’s bench, neither has been part of a consistent lineup that has played over 100 minutes together.
The team’s actual best lineup consists of Williams, Harrell, Harris, Gilgeous-Alexander and Mike Scott, posting a Net Rating of 30.1, but this group has only seen the floor for 27 minutes which isn’t much of a sample size.
The current standing of the starting lineup may be a little inflated but does reinforce the fact that this Clippers team is flat out good.