Scottie Pippen Doesn’t Believe LeBron James Will Be Tough Matchup This Season

Robert Marvi
3 Min Read

Many pundits agree that the two best teams in the Western Conference, if not the entire NBA this upcoming season will be the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers.

It’s a running debate at this point as far as which team will be better.

Former NBA star Scottie Pippen feels like the Clippers have the edge, and in an article in Slam he explained why.

“I think LeBron will be competitive,” said Pippen. “Having Anthony Davis out there is going to give him a bit of an edge. I think they’re going to be a lot more in terms of when they face the Clippers because they have too many guys they can throw at LeBron. They already have thrown [Patrick] Beverley at him, so now you got Kawhi to throw at him [and] Paul George to throw at him. Anthony Davis is going to be a tough matchup night in and night out, but he’s only one player. LeBron James is not going to be a tough matchup. He’s going into his 17th year in the League. You’re talking about Kawhi who’s still in his 20s [and] Paul George is probably still in his 20s. It’s a changing of the guard and they’re probably going to have the pass the torch over and let the Clippers be the best team in Los Angeles.”

Pippen has a history of being somewhat critical of James. This past season on ESPN’s “First Take,” he said that the Lakers superstar doesn’t possess the “clutch gene” the way that Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant did.

He also admonished James for calling himself the “greatest of all time,” and on another occasion, Pippen said on ESPN’s “The Jump” that “there’s no game that I would ever play in and pick LeBron James over Michael Jordan.”

The Clippers do have perhaps the best collection of perimeter defenders in the NBA right now, but James – especially a James who seems motivated to make amends for last season’s disastrous outcome – is a handful for any team to deal with. And that’s even for a Clippers team that former Laker Channing Frye recently said would be “the best defensive team ever.”

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Robert is a native of Santa Monica, Calif., and a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has been an avid NBA fan since he was a little kid in the mid '90s and fell in love with the Nick Van Exel-led Lakers teams. He truly cherishes the Kobe Bryant-era of Lakers basketball and the five world championships that came with it, and is looking forward to the team's next NBA title.