They have definitely done that after signing Forward Josh Smith to a 1 one-year deal.
According to sources close to the Rockets, Smith was offered a $2.5 million deal to stay with his former team, but elected to take less money to go to Los Angeles.
That’s fine with Smith because he still will be paid by the Pistons, who cut him last season. His team also added the likes of Austin Rivers, DeAndre Jordan, Paul Pierce, Cole Aldrich and Wesley Johnson. He averaged 12.4 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.3 assists in the regular season.
Smith has his flaws, starting with his love of the three ball – he’s a career 28 percent shooter from three who last season knocked down a barely passable 33 percent with Houston.
The Clippers are indeed set up to win next season. Because the Clippers already have filled out their salary cap space and exceptions, the deal likely must be for the National Basteball Association minimum. Smith’s personality makes him one of the more confident players in the league, and alongside the erratic attitude of Lance Stephenson and the commanding, and sometimes irritating, presence of Chris Paul could lead to conflict for the Clippers. The Kings do have Smith’s good friend Rajon Rondo on the roster. Smith will probably have to see the bench when he threatens to shoot Los Angeles out of games, and his very bad free-throw shooting ensures that teams will intentionally send him and Jordan to the line whenever it seems prudent.
The Clippers hope Smith will bring the same level of play he finished last season with. Smith had said he enjoyed playing for McHale because the offense allowed him to display an individuality that wasn’t possible in Detroit’s system. After a disaster stint with the Detroit Pistons and a successful run with the Houston Rockets, Smith was expected to be in high demand this offseason as a free agent. Rivers, Stephenson and Smith are all long, they are young, and if they can play with energy they could wreak some havoc.
Although the Rockets will be a better team next year because they will be healthier, the rest of the Western Conference hasn’t sat still. With more free space because of Smith leaving, this will make it easier for them to work out a contract with McDaniels.