Who Are the LA Clippers Getting in Luke Kennard?

Garrett Chorpenning

The LA Clippers reportedly acquired Detroit Pistons sharpshooter Luke Kennard in a three-team trade with the Brooklyn Nets and Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night.

LA first dealt Landry Shamet to the Brooklyn Nets for the No. 19 overall pick in the draft, which was quickly shipped to the Pistons with Rodney McGruder for Kennard. 

As a result, the Clippers are landing one of the better, younger shooters in the NBA and upgrading their depth at shooting guard. Moving McGruder also provides some payroll relief, paving the way for LA to use its full mid-level exception in free agency.

The former Duke standout posted career-high numbers in his third season in the league, averaging 15.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.1 assists in 32.9 minutes per game. His three-point stroke is his most impressive asset — Kennard converted 39.9% of his 6.5 three-point attempts per game in 2019-2020.

Kennard is an efficient scorer from the mid-range and at the rim as well — two areas where Shamet struggled to convert this past season. Per Cleaning the Glass, Kennard ranked in the 84th percentile at the rim and in the 63rd percentile from mid.

Neither player is strong on defense, though Kennard probably gets a slight nod there as well.

The main downside with Kennard — at least at the moment — is his health. 

Kennard hasn't made an NBA appearance since Dec. 21 and struggled with left and right knee tendinitis throughout the season. He's since recovered and suggested that his knee issues are behind him, but it'll be something to keep an eye on as the 2020-2021 season progresses.

Ultimately, this is a win-now move that should bode well for the Clippers so long as Kennard can stay healthy. 

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