Social Nav Bar Overrides - v2019


Global Sub Nav - v2019


Sixth Sense

Cavaliers Reserve Jordan Clarkson Has Brought Heat Off the Bench All Season Long
by Joe Gabriele Beat Writer

Sixth Sense

Cavaliers Reserve Jordan Clarkson Has Brought Heat
Off the Bench All Season Long

There are certain roles in sports that get a disproportionate amount of fan support. The backup quarterback. The ninth-inning closer. The sixth man.

Fans love a good sixth man because he’s got the most fun job on the floor – to enter the game ready to put points on the board. (If you disagree with that assessment, name the NBA’s last defensive-minded Sixth Man of the Year.)

This year’s Cavaliers don’t have the offensive arsenal they’ve had in the past – and points have been even harder to come by with Kevin Love on the shelf. Last year, Jordan Clarkson’s production off the bench was gravy. This year, it’s the meat and potatoes.

Clarkson hit the ground running after his arrival in Cleveland following a deadline deal with the Lakers – notching double-figures in 20 of his 28 regular season games. The combo-guard from Missouri would go on to finish second in the league in bench scoring at 13.9 ppg. But he struggled mightily in his postseason debut – averaging under five points and shooting 30 percent in Cleveland’s return to the Finals.

The fifth-year man from Missouri re-dedicated himself over the offseason and he came to Camp noticeably different. He’d obviously hit the weights, but also had plenty of fresh ink – right up to his chin.

Clarkson – whose mother is Filipino – also played a pair of games for the Philippines in the Asian Games this past summer, scoring 28 points against China and 25 in a loss to the defending champion South Koreans.

This year, Clarkson has picked up where he left off last regular season – notching double-figures in all 11 games this season. With Love on the mend, Clarkson’s 15.2 ppg average tops the the team and is good for fourth in the NBA. In Wednesday’s tough home loss to the Thunder, the 26-year-old nearly notched his first career triple-double: finishing with 11 points, nine boards and eight assists.

He’s been the Wine & Gold’s most electric scorer this season and he’s filling a role his squad desperately needs. He took a minute after practice to talk with about his refocused offseason, his current role with the team and his new tattoos …

Jordan Clarkson notched double-figures in 20 of his first 28 regular season games with Cleveland last year and has done so in all 11 so far this season.
Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images

Do you have a preference when it comes to staring or coming off the bench?

Jordan Clarkson: Coming off the bench is just my role. I know I could do more. I know I'm a playmaker. But my role has been bench scoring for the past three years. So I'm trying to just be really good at that.

You started 79 games for the Lakers in 2015-16 but started coming off the bench the following season. What was the reason for the change?

Clarkson: To be honest, I don't even know. They just told me: ‘We want you to be a sixth man.’

It was a whole new coaching staff, so I said 'alright'. For me, whenever I get on the floor, I'm gonna try to impact the game and just do what I do. And that's really what it came down to.

I'm really not into getting my name called (in player intros) and all that stuff, but I know I can be a starter in this league. But all that stuff is out of my control. I just control what I can control -- go out there and try to be the best I can be in the minutes I get, with the plays that are called for me.

"Just getting back to work really helped me. Just falling in love with the process: getting in the weight room, eating right, staying in the gym."

- Jordan Clarkson on re-dedicating himself over the summer.

Is there something kind of liberating (and just plain fun) about checking into the game knowing your job is to score?

Clarkson: Yeah, it is. It's just me going out there and just kind of ... creating.

Coach told me that they need me to score and that's what I'm doing. I feel like I get some slack because I get no assists, but that's kind of not my job. They're telling me we have to put points on the board.

So I'm just playing my role and doing that.

It is fun, though.

Like I said, it's about creating -- like an artist having a free canvas, going out there, creating shots, making them. I like going in there, quieting crowds or sparking energy for the team.

What did you focus on over the summer?

Clarkson: I just fell in love with the process again.

You know, after the Playoffs, that really humbled me a lot – just in terms of where my game was going and where I needed it to be.

So, it was just sitting down and taking a look at myself in the mirror – critiquing myself and blocking all the outside noise out. And just getting back to work really helped me. Just falling in love with the process: getting in the weight room, eating right, staying in the gym.

Even during Training Camp, I was in here at night. Waking up early in the morning, getting in here with D-Mill (Cavs Strength and Conditioning Coach Derek Millender).

Basically falling in love with the game again, falling in love with the process. I just wanted to re-gear myself and get back to what I'm used to.

You mentioned during Training Camp how important the Asian Games were to you over the Summer.

Clarkson: Yeah, it was definitely important for me to represent that side of my heritage and my culture. My grandma was crying every game, watching me play!

So, just being able to give back to the people, the country, and representing them has been amazing. I always feel the support and the love. I'm just trying to do my best to represent them when I'm over here as well as my family and everybody else.

Your first full season with the Cavaliers has been difficult so far. But where do you feel this team is headed?

Clarkson: I feel like we're going in the right direction. We just need to get guys on the same page -- moving the ball, not as many possessions where we're over-dribbling the ball. I have a tendency to do that sometimes.

I'm just trying to be aggressive and make plays, but you watch film and you see that you can get off the ball get it to somebody else and let them make a play for you.

And then defensively, we've been talking much more.

Guys are getting a little more comfortable and I think it's gonna start coming together.

You’ve also committed yourself to the ink this summer?

Clarkson: I just finished up my neck and got a few more things on my arms. I've still got to finish my Texas stuff on my arm.

My neck is a full thing that goes through my chest and that's what the roses are there -- the beautiful part. And then the roots where my grandma and my great-grandma are all gonna be on my chest.

But I like art. So, it's been really cool to be able to work with some of the guys, especially the guy that does all my big detail stuff. He's really cool. He's actually in Vancouver and we've gotten really close over the process. I like a lot of his work.

Looks like it was kinda painful.

Clarkson: Oh, it was.

Clarkson Banks Home the Tough Fall-away

Jordan Clarkson goes glass to hit the tough fall-away as the shot clock winds down.

Jordan Clarkson Feature - November 8, 2018

Scroll Video up Scroll Video down Scroll Video left Scroll Video right

Clarkson Banks Home the Tough Fall-away

Jordan Clarkson goes glass to hit the tough fall-away as the shot clock winds down.
Jan 16, 2019  |  00:20

Top Plays of the Week powered by ENGIE

Check out the Wine & Gold's Top Plays from the thirteenth week of the 2018-19 campaign.
Jan 14, 2019  |  01:26

GAME RECAP: Cavaliers 101, Lakers 95

Cedi Osman scores 20 points to lead the Cavaliers to a win over the Lakers, 101-95.
Jan 13, 2019  |  00:00

Clarkson Double Clutch Bucket

Jordan Clarkson soars through the lane and hangs long enough to toss in the bucket.
Jan 13, 2019  |  00:17

Clarkson's Crossover and Score

Jordan Clarkson crosses up the Lakers defense and finishes off the move by converting the bank shot.
Jan 13, 2019  |  00:21

Sexton Dimes Clarkson for the Triple

Collin Sexton draws in the defense and kicks it out to Jordan Clarkson who knocks down the triple to give the Wine & Gold an early double-digit advantage.
Jan 13, 2019  |  00:15

GAME RECAP: Rockets 141, Cavaliers 113

James Harden notches a triple-double with 43points, 10 rebounds, and 12 assists to lead Houston over Cleveland.
Jan 11, 2019  |  00:00

GAME RECAP: Pelicans 140, Cavaliers 124

Anthony Davis finishes with 38 points and 13 rebounds as the Pelicans win their third straight game.
Jan 9, 2019  |  00:00

Clarkson with Back-to-Back Swats

Jordan Clarkson gets defensive on the Pelicans with two blocks.
Jan 9, 2019  |  00:33

Clarkson with the Steal and Score

Jordan Clarkson gets the theft at one end and takes it down to the other for the layup in this ‘More Driven Highlight’ driven by Goodyear.
Jan 9, 2019  |  00:13

Cavs Go 8-for-8 on Triples in Opening Quarter

The Wine & Gold start out hot in The Big Easy by netting their first eight triples against the Pelicans.
Jan 9, 2019  |  01:26

#CavsPacers Postgame: Jordan Clarkson

Cavaliers guard Jordan Clarkson spoke with the media following Tuesday’s loss to the Indiana Pacers at Quicken Loans Arena.
Jan 8, 2019  |  03:44

Jordan Clarkson (26 points) Highlights vs. Indiana Pacers

Clarkson tallies a team-high 26 points in Cavaliers loss to Pacers on Tuesday night at Quicken Loans Arena.
Jan 8, 2019  |  00:00

GAME RECAP: Pacers 123, Cavaliers 115

Jordan Clarkson tallies 26 points in Cavs loss to the Pacers on Tuesday night in Cleveland.
Jan 8, 2019  |  00:00

Delly Dimes Clarkson for a Beauty of a Layup

Delly makes a slick pass to Jordan Clarkson who, in turn, makes two defenders miss before laying the ball in with ease.
Jan 8, 2019  |  00:11

Featured Highlight: Steal Leads to Score

Jordan Clarkson makes an athletic play on the ball before dropping a nice dime to Cedi Osman in the second quarter.
Jan 8, 2019  |  00:24

Clarkson Throws the Hammer Down

Jordan Clarkson throws the hammer down with a strong two-handed jam in the first quarter.
Jan 8, 2019  |  00:11

GAME RECAP: Pelicans 133, Cavaliers 98

Jordan Clarkson scores 23 points in Cavs loss to the Pelicans on Saturday night.
Jan 5, 2019  |  00:00

Clarkson Battles in the Paint for Slick Layup

Jordan Clarkson does whatever it takes to get to the basket during the second quarter of action on Saturday night against NOLA.
Jan 5, 2019  |  00:22

Peep the Cavs City Edition Intro Video

Check out the Cavs intro video played before every City Edition game at Quicken Loans Arena.
Jan 5, 2019  |  01:05

FOX Sports Ohio Listen In: Jordan Clarkson

Listen in as FOX Sports Ohio mic'd up Jordan Clarkson during Friday's game against the Utah Jazz at Quicken Loans Arena.
Jan 4, 2019  |  01:53

GAME RECAP: Jazz 117, Cavaliers 91

All five Jazz starters score in double-figures led by Donovan Mitchell's 18 points as Utah wins on the road.
Jan 4, 2019  |  00:00

Clarkson Scoops and Scores

Jordan Clarkson drives past the Jazz defense and soars for the scoop shot in this ‘More Driven Highlight’ driven by Goodyear.
Jan 4, 2019  |  00:24

Frye Dimes Clarkson for the Layup

Channing Frye spots Jordan Clarkson cutting through the lane for the easy bucket.
Jan 4, 2019  |  00:15

GAME RECAP: Heat 117, Cavs 92

Tristan Thompson tallies a team-high 14 points in first game of 2019 for Cavaliers.
Jan 2, 2019  |  00:00

Clarkson Buries Three after In-Bounding Ball

Jordan Clarkson nails the three-pointer after in-bounding the ball just moments earlier.
Jan 2, 2019  |  00:10

Clarkson Rises to Block Shot

Jordan Clarkson makes a nice defensive stop in the second quarter, blocking the Heat's shot and gaining the Cavs possession.
Jan 2, 2019  |  00:21

Top Plays of December presented by Lexus

Dishes, dunks and drives, has your best moments from the final month of 2018.
Dec 31, 2018  |  05:52

GAME RECAP: Hawks 111, Cavaliers 108

Trae Young scores 21 points and Vince Carter adds a season-high 21 of his own off the bench in the Hawks victory.
Dec 29, 2018  |  00:00

Cedi Powers Home the Slam

Jordan Clarkson outlets to Cedi Osman who throws the hammer down, plus the foul.
Dec 29, 2018  |  00:29