Clippers send Travis Leslie to D-League

As if the 79-49 whipping that the Georgia men’s basketball team received last night at the hands of Kentucky wasn’t damaging enough to the psyche of the UGA players and fans, today the Bulldog program took another shot on the chin as its NBA representation was slashed by 25% with the Los Angeles Clippers’ demotion of Travis Leslie.

Leslie, a three-year player for the Dawgs and a key member of last season’s NCAA Tournament team, was designated today – according to ESPN LA – to the Bakersfield Jam of the Developmental League.  He appeared in only 8 of the Clippers first 33 games, averaging 1.5 points and 1 rebound per game.

Travis Leslie’s latest tweet revealed some frustrations the young man obviously has with his team’s decision:

“How can u prove something when u don’t get a chance”

Leslie’s decision to forgo his senior season at Georgia raised a few eyebrows as many observers and fans thought that he might benefit from one more year of college basketball so that he could enhance his shooting and dribbling skills.

I do not know Travis Leslie’s family situation and what role that played in his choosing to leave early, but I am almost positive that some hot-shot agent filled his head with a lot of lofty promises that most likely nudged him towards turning pro.

I hope that Leslie makes the most of his opportunity in Bakersfield so that he will enjoy a speedy return to the NBA.

6 thoughts on “Clippers send Travis Leslie to D-League

    1. I certainly understand your position but I respectfully disagree. The most important thing for Leslie’s NBA career was to be drafted. If an NBA team drafts a player it has some degree of investment in they player’s success. A team has a greater investment in a 2nd round pick than it does in sn undrafted free agent. Thus, getting drafted wad crucial for him.

      The gamble last spring arose because, in part due to.the lockout, the pool of players entering the draft this year was not as good as the pool expected to enter in 2012. TL knew is game needed work. He knew that if he returned to UGA he was limited by NCAA rules to 20 hours a week with the UGA staff and if he wanted additional professional skills coaching he would have to finds way to pay for it. He also had to bra student and devote some time and energy thstcouldhave gone to improving his game to schoolwork. ZFinally, one never knows when an UGA athlete may improperly exit an alley.

      By contrast, if he went pro and got drafted he would be a full time basketball player with access to more coaching on his skills.

      Thus, the dilemma. Go pro in 2012 with a shallower pool of competition and, if drafted, work on skills as a full time pro with a $500,000 contract or stay in school and have less pactice opportunity and be careful around alleys, and hope that he will improve relative to the other players in the draft.

      He got drafted. The Clippers invested a pick and some money in him. The Clippers now have some skin in his development in Bakersfield.
      All things considered I can see both sides of the issue. Mistake yo glinting the 21012 draft? Maybe, maybe not, but it wasn’t moronic.


      1. I’m sure Leslie made a decision that he felt was best for him based upon the information he was receiving at the time. Hopefully the D-League teaches him how to create his own shot…he’ll be back on an NBA roster in no time once that happens.


  1. Actually, I was surprised that he didn’t start the season in the D-league as the beat writer out there for the LA times had said that plans were to send him to Bakersfield when the Clips broke camp. Ah Bakersfield. Travis will likely feel that he has been optioned to hell. Have been there many times (with family living in the area). It’s brown, flat, and kind of like Midland Tx…but with mountains around (if you can see them through the air pollution). Athens would probably look pretty good to Travis right now.


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