The LA Clippers season came to an abrupt end when the team failed to win either play-in game as they dealt with injuries to Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Their offseason, however, has gotten off to a fantastic start thanks for Robert Covington.
The Clippers and Robert Covington have agreed to a two-year, $24 million contract extension, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Thursday afternoon.
Los Angeles Clippers forward Robert Covington has agreed on a two-year, $24 million contract extension, his agent Andrew Morrison of @CAA_Basketball tells ESPN. pic.twitter.com/myggO0o4Sp
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 5, 2022
Covington was set to become a free agent, but Robert and the Clippers were able to negotiate a two-year extension keeping the versatile forward in Los Angeles for at least the next few seasons.
“Joining here, I had the most fun I’ve had all season,” Robert Covington said in his end-of-season press conference in April. “It got back to the joy of just having fun. The team made it that way. The guys made it that way. It was a smooth transition. It’s rare that you come from a team that has basically the same offense and defensive schemes as the team that you just left. It’s rare that you can easily adapt in that manner.
“The transition here was easy for me. Like I said, it was just getting comfortable in the rotations and learning the spots, getting the feel for everything. Like I said, a new coach. I watched Lue for years. What a great coach in this league. His schemes and everything. It was fun to be a part of.”
"Of course. Of course. It's been a great transition and of course I would like to return. We'll just see how the tides roll."
Robert Covington on if he sees the Clippers as a long term home pic.twitter.com/NNdPOZojE1
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) April 16, 2022
Robert Covington averaged 10.4 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.3 steals, and 1.2 blocks per game while shooting 50 percent from the field and 45 percent from beyond the arc. Since his arrival in Los Angeles, he showed his true value as one of the best 3-and-D guys in the league, but also displayed a knack for creating off the dribble and getting to the free throw line.
Robert Covington was the only player during the 2021-22 NBA season to accrue at least 90 steals and at least 90 blocks, per Stathead. It was also the second time he achieved the feat in the last three seasons. Additionally, Covington finished the season sixth in total deflections at 222 in 71 appearances, per NBA.com/stats.
The Clippers are expected to enter next season as one of the favorites to win the NBA Championship. Kawhi Leonard is expected to be ready by training camp, Paul George will be back as well, and the Clippers look deep at every position.
Heading into the offseason, Robert Covington said he would love to return to the Clippers, and that the only priority at this point in his career was winning an NBA Championship.
“Everybody wants to at the end of the day go and have a ring on their finger,” Covington explained in his exit interview. “The main thing what we do in this whole time that we played is to win a championship. That’s my ultimate goal. I’m about to walk into my 10th year. Nobody thought I would make it 10 years. They said I wouldn’t make it two. I’m getting ready to prepare for my 10th year. I’ve had a great career thus far, made a name for myself.
“Like I said, I want to put myself in the best position to win a championship. That’s my mentality because that’s really the only thing for me. I take that. That completes pretty much exactly what I’ve tried to do. Everybody steps in this league to win the championship. That’s what everyone’s ultimate goal is. That’s why we put on the jersey, step on the court, play 48 minutes each and every night.”
"It’s exciting to see what [Norman Powell] is gonna be able to do once he comes back & once we get our full team back… It’s gonna be scary. It’s gonna be very scary cuz you got so much firepower throughout the entire team at any given moment."
Robert Covington on the Clippers pic.twitter.com/OE9qBvalJj
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) April 5, 2022
Covington’s best chance at an NBA Championship will come next season. If Kawhi Leonard can return to form and stay healthy, adding him to the team that already features Paul George, Robert Covington, and Nicolas Batum will be even more formidable. With the way the Clippers played last year, health might be the only thing that stops them.