The Los Angeles Clippers have already locked themselves into the fourth seed for the playoffs in the Western Conference standings, and they are now gearing up for their first-round matchup against the Dallas Mavericks. The Clippers are going to need all the help they can get if they intend on beating the Mavericks, which may help explain their latest roster move.

In an effort to shore up the back of their bench, the Clippers have signed Kai Jones to a multi-year deal, adding him to their playoff roster in the process. In order to create a roster spot for him, LA decided to move on from another controversial young player in Josh Primo, as they waived him to free up space for Jones to join them.

Clippers hoping to unearth a gem in Kai Jones

Charlotte Hornets forward Kai Jones (23) dribbles against the Golden State Warriors during the third quarter at Golden 1 Center.
Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Jones was the 19th overall pick of the 2021 NBA Draft, but he is most well-known for going on a strange social media tirade back in September in which he criticized his Charlotte Hornets team and teammates, while also declaring himself the greatest basketball player of all time. He ended up requesting a trade on social media, which led to the Hornets eventually releasing him.

The Philadelphia 76ers signed Jones to a ten-day contract back in March, but he only played for their G-League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats. However, he got through that quick stint with the team without anything crazy happening, and the Clippers decided to give him a spot on their playoff roster in hopes that he can realize his potential with them.

On the other hand, Primo will be headed out of town after the Clippers signed him back in September. Primo was previously accused of exposing himself to several female San Antonio Spurs employees, resulting in the Spurs releasing him. While a lawsuit was filed against him, it was eventually dropped due to insufficient evidence.

Primo spent most of his time in the G-League this year before he suffered a season-ending ankle injury. By swapping Primo out for Jones, the Clippers clearly value Jones' height over Primo's, and they are hoping that if they need some help in their frontcourt in the playoffs that they could turn to Jones in an effort to see what he can do for them.

It's safe to say that this is a fairly unexpected move by the Clippers, but if Jones pans out for them, it could look like a stroke of genius from their front office. Of course, expecting Jones to get big minutes in the postseason isn't a good idea, but he is inked to a multi-year deal, which is noteworthy. Jones will be given time to figure things out, and while it isn't going to be a move that immediately yields results, it will be interesting to see if he can get back on track and find his way with Los Angeles.