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Top five shooting guards in Los Angeles Clippers history
Qualifiers: The Los Angeles Clippers have more than 40 years of history dating back to their origins as the Buffalo Braves, so players should have at least two seasons with the team. Also, players will be classified under one position even if they played at more than one. For example, while Bob McAdoo played both center and power forward, he will appear on only one list.
Two-time All-Star guard Randy Smith was an iron man for the early Buffalo Braves and San Diego Clippers in the 1970s. Though he wasn't drafted until the seventh round in 1971, Smith surprised everyone and became a major contributor as early as his rookie season. He was a high-flying scoring guard who earned All-NBA honors in 1976 and won the MVP of an All-Star Game in 1978. He led the Braves to their first three NBA Playoffs while maintaining averages of 17.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 1.5 steals with the franchise. Smith remains the Los Angeles Clippers' all-time leading scorer with 12,735 points; he is the only Clipper with at least 10,000 points and he also owns franchise records of 3,498 assists and 1,072 steals.
Ron Harper spent the prime of his career with the Los Angeles Clippers from 1989 to 1994. When Harper arrived in Los Angeles, he helped the Clippers rise from the basement of the western conference to multiple .500 seasons and playoff berths. In 304 games as a Clipper, Harper averaged 19.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 2.0 steals. He went on to win five NBA Championships with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers.
World B. Free:
Though his run with the Clippers was short, former All-Star guard World B. Free left a lasting impact on the franchise. Free was an outstanding slasher and one of the best pure scorers of his era. There have been six 2,000 point seasons in Clippers history and Free owns two of them. He finished second only to George Gervin for the 1979 and 1980 scoring titles. Free put together eight straight seasons of better than 20 points per game including two-year averages of 29.4 points, 3.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists with the Clippers.
Current Clipper Eric Gordon has emerged as one of the best young shooting guards in the NBA. Gordon was a great shooter when he entered the league, but he has also improved his assertiveness on the drive. Over the last three seasons, Gordon averaged 18.1 points and 3.3 assists and reached career-highs of 22.3 points and 4.4 assists per game in 2010-11. He already ranks fourth in team history in three-point baskets and his 356 threes place him just 11 shy of second place.
Recently retired shooting guard Cuttino Mobley finished his career with four years in Los Angeles from 2005 to 2008. In 196 games with the Clippers, Mobley posted averages of 13.8 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists per contest. He was a starter for the last Clippers team to reach the playoffs. Though he was traded to the New York Knicks, Mobley played his last NBA game as a Clipper in 2008 as a heart condition forced him to retire early.
Los Angeles Clippers Franchise Index, Basketball-Reference.com
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