The Clippers have been able to maintain nearly all of the depth that allowed them to remain competitive last season. They did that by taking full advantage of owner Steve Ballmer's spending power.

Recall that they played last season without Kawhi Leonard and with Paul George only allowed to play in 31 games. And yet they finished among the Western Conference's top eight teams (just forget how they lost to both the Minnesota Timberwolves and the New Orleans Hornets in the play-in tournament).

This offseason, the Clippers re-signed Nicolas Batum and Amir Coffey with healthy raises after extending Robert Covington and Ivica Zubac before they entered free agency.

In order to fully use their unrivaled wing depth coming season, the Clippers will probably play more small ball after losing backup center Isaiah Hartenstein. The Clippers upgraded at point guard by adding John Wall with their mid-level exception instead of trying to replace Hartenstein.

With Kawhi Leonard and Paul George back from injury, all that is left for the Clippers to do is enter the season healthy and see whether they can win the team's first title. The Clippers should be among the top teams this season. Some even consider them the deepest. With a lot of shooters surrounding many solid playmakers, the Clippers are in a prime spot to contend for a title.

In totality, the Clippers didn't do badly this offseason. Of course, Wall was the only big acquisition they made, but keeping the great bulk of your top free agents has some merit. It is obvious that the Clippers had a good summer, though losing Hartenstein will certainly expose some holes in the middle.

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It's possible that the Clippers' weakness is their lack of size and rebounding. The Clippers actually rank low in nearly all rebounding metrics. In terms of offensive rebounds, they were the lowest in the league. That's for both the offensive rebounds they grabbed and those they allowed. They have virtually no center depth; therefore, they urgently need someone who can replace Ivica Zubac off the bench.

One logical tactic is for the coaching staff to choose to play small-ball when necessary, giving Zubac a break. If they don't get rebounds, though, that's going to hurt big time. In the playoffs, they will suffer from giving up offensive rebounds. Their opponents' coaches will surely exploit their weakness in size.

Even though the Clippers were seventh in the NBA in blocks per game last season, they don't have a particularly strong shot-blocking unit this time around. They don't have much rim protection, and their blocks don't come from having a lot of inside presence.

As mentioned before, Hartenstein's departure will hurt the Clips' interior defense. Of the 57 players who blocked at least 250 attempts at the rim last season, Hartenstein had the greatest rim protection mark (47.5 percent).

Ivica Zubac is not a rim protector like other big guys, and he doesn't have a solid rim-protecting backup. Their forwards aren't shot-blockers, too. Last season, Nicolas Batum led all players with an average of 0.7 blocks per game. The others all had lower averages.

The Clippers really needed to upgrade their interior defense during free agency by signing a player like maybe Hassan Whiteside. Looking ahead, given the Clippers' current depth at center, opposing teams are free to attack the rim at will.

Last season, opponents outscored the Clippers by 5.9 points per game in the restricted area. That disparity was by far the worst in the league. Both the Clippers' free throw percentage and the proportion of their shots made in the paint also put them in the bottom five in each of the previous two seasons.

Some will say that Kawhi Leonard's return will address those issues, but that's not necessarily true. It's reasonable to doubt that he'll be getting to the rim more moving forward. This is because he is returning from another knee injury.

Hartenstein's departure is regrettable. Still, the Clippers seem willing to use smaller guys like Robert Covington and Marcus Morris as backup centers. Whether that will be enough remains to be seen. The Clippers should also find it tough when they go up against top-heavy teams like the Phoenix Suns, Denver Nuggets, and Minnesota Timberwolves.