Lue embracing pressure that comes with coaching Clippers

Tyronn Lue encourages the Clippers last season as an assistant coach.

Tyronn Lue doesn’t seem to fear the many expectations that are sure to come as new coach of the Los Angeles Clippers. Just the opposite, actually.

“I want to be one of the greatest coaches,” Lue told reporters. “In order to be great, you have to win. So to me, when you start talking about pressure and all that it means, it just means that you’re in position to win a championship.”

Lue is replacing friend and mentor Doc Rivers, who was let go after the season but has since landed with the Philadelphia 76ers. But Rivers couldn’t get a team with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to hold a 3-1 series lead over the Denver Nuggets and out of the second round of the playoffs.

So for the second time in his career, Lue will be moving over a chair. The first came with the Cleveland Cavaliers, when he went from lead assistant to replacing David Blatt midway through the 2015-16 season. The Cavs went on to win the championship, then made two more appearances in the Finals after that.

He is now doing the same in LA after a year as lead assistant. He knows everyone is expecting similar results to the accomplishments in Cleveland.

Lue said he is fine with that, and plans to implement a philosophy to get the Clippers to the next level.

“We need to play faster,” he said. “Getting easy baskets is one thing, but sharing the basketball, playing through our best players and then also making the other players on our team better, changing sides of the floor with the ball, I think is very important for this team. Also getting our players in the best position, in the best spots on the floor that they’re comfortable in.”

It all is expected to begin sometime in December or January, the targeted months for the start of next season. And if Lue has his way, it will be a long time before it ends. A lot longer than it took last season, to be precise.

About the Author

Sam Amico
Sam Amico is the founder and senior writer of Amico Hoops. He has covered the NBA on a full-time basis for both Sports Illustrated and FOX Sports, and has been a regular contributor to CBS Sports, the Boston Herald and

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