Way #4: The James Harden-Westbrook backcourt could be a mess
We have seen this Harden-Westbrook backcourt, not once, but twice. Neither time it has led to a championship and both times it was intriguing to watch, but not effective basketball. Look no further than when the Rockets had this guard duo and Harden and Westbrook combined to shoot 18/68 (26.5%) in an NBA game, while the rest of their team shot just 44 times.
Westbrook has worked hard to shape his game to do what the Clippers need and has actually been a huge positive since joining the roster last season, so changing up this backcourt and adding Harden may not be a good thing. Not only has neither guard been an efficient shooter across their careers, but neither is a positive defensive presence on the perimeter. Both Harden and Westbrook have recorded a -1.5 defensive RAPTOR rating or worse in each of their last two seasons.
This backcourt lineup also forces Paul George or Kawhi Leonard to play substantial minutes at the Power Forward position. Leonard has only played 7% of his career minutes at PF and George has only played 12% of his career minutes at PF. Both guys are elite defenders when healthy, but having to constantly defend larger forwards/bigs may take a toll on these two. The last thing that the Clippers need is to increase the likelihood that George or Leonard miss another playoff run due to injury.