As one door opens, another door closes. That phrase felt notably relevant yesterday in Clipper land.
In this state of affairs, the opening got here for Terance Mann, signing a two-12 months, $22 million extension to stay at STAPLES Center till 2025. When the tip of that deal rolls round he’ll be 28 years previous, so the Clippers might have, in idea, simply secured their man for his peak years — and if his current progress is something to go by, that could possibly be a vastly thrilling few years for each events.
Yet given Mann’s persona, I’m certain he’d have nonetheless felt a tinge of disappointment even on his large day after seeing that his former school and Clippers teammate Mfiondu Kabengele had another door closed on him. In case you missed it, Fi was waived by the Cleveland Cavaliers, the second time this 12 months for the former Florida State Seminole. That was his third crew within the league after he was traded to Sacramento again in March, although he’s not the one former Clip to have seen himself bouncing around the league by way of waivers, as Daniel Oturu has suffered a related destiny inside the house of the previous month.
The Kabengele information actually introduced residence to me simply how small the margins are within the league, how home windows of alternative can come and go within the blink of an eye fixed, and the way it’s essential to be in the proper place on the proper time to grab them. Had Kawhi Leonard not gone down injured within the playoffs, Mann should be weighing up his choices on a deal which was non-assured earlier than subsequent summer time’s free company. Leonard did go down although, and Mann stepped up in his place — the 39-level sport towards Utah the plain spotlight.
Kabengele by no means actually bought that luxurious, and you’ll say what you need about his potential or his work ethic by comparability, however a part of his misfortune would be the quantity of change across the Clippers backup large positions since he was drafted.
Don’t neglect that Fi was drafted within the first spherical because the twenty seventh total decide, in the very same 12 months that his Florida State teammate was picked up at 48. When they stated getting drafted is the simple half earlier than the actual work begins, they actually weren’t mendacity. This is the second time in Fi’s NBA profession that he’s been minimize from a roster earlier than the tip of his contract. That should take its toll on a man who had the added strain of getting NBA Hall of Famer Dikembe Mutombo as an uncle, however hopefully his household will be the help community wanted to get Kabengele again into the league.
Family has definitely been a big issue within the rise of Mann, together with his mom Daynia La-Force continuously there to supply recommendation at each twist and switch of his profession. The Atlanta Dream assistant coach appears to not solely be his greatest cheerleader when issues are going properly, but in addition the particular person he can flip to after they aren’t. Just a few weeks again, she organised a shock for her son to satisfy his childhood hero Allen Iverson, whereas extra not too long ago Clippers assistant coach Dahntay Jones in contrast Mann’s talent set to that of Jimmy Butler. If he can get even midway in the direction of emulating both of these guys, there shall be lots extra good instances to come back for this franchise.
Mann might have been written off as an NBA participant by some, however the doubters shall be far fewer by now — although he appears to thrive off the concept there nonetheless are anyway, after he threw shade in the direction of the most recent GM’s survey highlighting him as a breakout star for this upcoming season. Meanwhile, Kabengele must get better from another big setback and show to the franchises which have doubted him that he could make it on the prime stage. Players have definitely come again from worse prior to now.
Speaking after the affirmation of his contract extension yesterday, Mann stated: “I hope I will be motivation for people who find themselves in my place sooner or later or have been earlier than.” Kabengele is a man who isn’t any stranger to the spots that his former teammate has been in and, though his present place will really feel that little bit additional away proper now, hopefully he can use it as motivation.
I want Fi all the very best with no matter comes subsequent and I hope he lands on his toes. As for Mann, he’ll be conserving his toes firmly on the bottom, however the sky is the restrict.