The Los Angeles Clippers sprinted out to three victories over their first four games in a season many predict affords them their best chance in recent history of legitimately competing for the NBA title that has long proven so elusive for the once troubled franchise.

But after Wednesday night’s 121-104 drubbing at the hands of the Western Conference rival Golden State Warriors, coach Doc Rivers seemed as depressed as he’s ever been that his team may now be as far away from arriving at their ultimate destination as they’ve ever been.

“That’s as soft as you can get in a game,” Rivers lamented after the Clips allowed 65 points while committing just one foul over the entire first half. “That’s as bad as I’ve seen. Forget what we’ve got to fix. That, over anything, tells me we weren’t competitive.”

Raising Rivers ire equally as much was the play of All-Star forward Blake Griffin, who finished the night with 14 points and just one rebound.

“We’ve got to rebound better,” said Rivers. “He’s got to rebound better. The way we moved on the floor tonight… were we tired? We may have been. I just know me. If I’m tired and getting my butt kicked, I’m going to leave the game with no fouls left. Right now, this is not the same group from last year. And it’s the same group. So, we have to figure that out.”

The Clippers have their first chance for immediate redemption Saturday night when they host the Portland Trailblazers. Until then, Rivers will be desperately trying to put the pieces back together.

“I don’t think we’re bringing anything to these games when quizzed as to if he feels his team has the right mindset. “You know when you’re not playing well, and you know when you’re not right”

[Photo Credit: Lori anne DiSabato]