Did Tyronn Lue find a checkmate?
Clippers have outscored the Jazz 198-140 after a defensive shift
BY DAVID THORPE
Move. Counter. Move. In the playoffs, there’s much talk about the chess of basketball coaching—’tis the season of tweaking lineups and strategies, observing, and tweaking again. Like a chef adding a pinch of salt, these are refinements.
Every once in a while, though, it’s momentous. Every once in a while, a coaching strategy changes everything. Every once in a while, a team discovers a way to play that their opponent just can’t handle—and just like that, the series is decided. That’s checkmate.
In Game 3 of the Clippers series against the top-ranked Jazz, Clippers coach Tyronn Lue changed his team’s defense. It has already turned the series around completely. The Jazz have been helpless and blown out for six quarters. Unless the Jazz can find an answer in a hurry—I have some ideas—Lue’s defensive tweak will decide the series.
What didn’t work
Coach Lue decided to start five non-ce…