Montrezl Harrell gives Clippers a jolt of energy in reserve role

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “Man, he’s done a lot for us this season,” Clippers center DeAndre Jordan said of Harrell, a power forward in his third NBA season and his first with the Clippers after joining the team in the multi-player offseason trade that sent Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets.“He’s started for us, he’s come off the bench and given us a lot of energy, and he’s a force down in the post,” Jordan said, referring to Harrell’s first career consecutive 20-point games, in a loss Tuesday to New Orleans and a win Friday over Cleveland. “He scores easily and we’re featuring him down there.”At first glance, and maybe at second and third looks, too, Harrell seemed to be a throw-in player in the Paul deal. Patrick Beverley and Lou Williams were considered the key players the Clippers received in return for the future Hall of Fame point guard.Rivers has started Harrell three times this season, preferring to harness that energy and production in a reserve role. Harrell gives the Clippers a different look than Jordan, a 6-foot-11 defensive specialist who doesn’t look for his shot as much as his teammate.Harrell also plays a more physical role than any of the other Clippers’ forwards. LOS ANGELES — Who is Montrezl Harrell and what is he doing helping the Clippers win games?For starters, he’s a 6-foot-8, 240-pound bundle of energy who doesn’t start.He plays a reserve role and he plays it well.So well, in fact, that he was averaging 10.3 points, 4 rebounds and 0.8 assists in 16.2 minutes in 58 games before the Clippers played host to the Orlando Magic on Saturday night at Staples Center. He’s on pace to set career highs in games, points and rebounds.center_img “When we got him, we looked at him as an energy guy and a guy who can defend,” Coach Doc Rivers said. “That is what he did everywhere he’s been and then every practice he gets in he keeps scoring and scoring. We start to think, ‘Maybe he can score a little bit.’”EVANS UPDATERookie guard Jawun Evans was scoreless with one rebound and two assists in 9:22 in the Clippers’ victory over the Cavaliers on Friday, his first game after sitting out for 18 consecutive because of a lower abdominal injury. He suffered no setbacks and was in the lineup again Saturday.“Jawun looked great,” Rivers said of Evans, who was expected to play a similar backup role in the Clippers’ game against the Magic. “He felt great. I thought he had an impact. I thought he played the right amount of minutes, not to push him too far.”ALOHA, CLIPPERSThe Clippers will return to the University of Hawaii for training camp next September, the team announced Saturday. The Clippers held camp there last season for the first time and played two exhibition games against the Toronto Raptors at Stan Sheriff Center.“That’s great,” Rivers said. “Hawaii was great. That was really good. I just thought it was a great team-building trip for us, going out in the water and doing all those (outrigger canoe) races and all that stuff. I thought it wasn’t a distraction. It was really good.”Further details of the trip will be announced at a later date.last_img

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