Round two is here! The Utah Jazz have fallen short each of the past several seasons. And the L.A. Clippers have not ever qualified for the conference finals. Somebody will lose and have a disappointing end, and the other will be celebrating something major. What a battle this series is expected to be, every game a must-see.
The Clippers come in having just defeated the Mavericks in seven games. The main reason they won was that they were 3-0 on the road. It means they went 1-3 at home, but they took care of business in a hostile environment, and it meant everything. Being the lower seed this time, they can possibly win four road games, should the series go the distance.
Utah dispatched Memphis in five games and has been playing the waiting game. Donovan Mitchell is a pure lover of basketball and is tweeting about all the games he isn’t playing in. We know that he will be ready to play, now healthier than he has been in months. The team is extremely talented and finished with the top record in the West for a reason, after all.
Look at all the star power in this series. So many great perimeter players. This will be fun.
Spread: The game 1 spread is set at UTAH -4. The over/under is 220 points.
Clips Seeking Quick Beginning
Nobody wants to ever go down 0-2 in a playoff series. And they never want that deficit after playing on their home floor. But the Clippers had that happen to them, and they overcame it. The Mavericks did not win a playoff game on their own home court. What an effort it was from these guys, who now enter into this very battle-tested.
Kawhi Leonard has been playing out of his mind and made some history against those Mavs. He became just the fourth player to ever score 200+ points in a playoff series while shooting better than 60% from the floor. How about that for a perimeter player? He was nearly unstoppable and guided his team from a 3-2 deficit.
To win game 1, they need to win the three-point battle and limit the Jazz to one shot.
Jazz Look to Stay Hot
After picking up a gentleman’s sweep over the Grizzlies, the Jazz got some time off. It is unclear if Mike Conley Jr. will be on the court to open things up, but the team is dangerous either way. If that is the case, they just slide Joe Ingles into the PG spot and add Miye Oni to the rotation.
Rudy Gobert has continued to be excellent, looking like he might be Defensive Player of the Year yet again. Derrick Favors returned to his old team last summer and has been playing great ball for the squad. They missed him greatly a season ago.
To claim the win to open things, they need to win the bench scoring and have Donovan Mitchell be the game’s leading scorer.
Utah Starts 1-0
Adversity once more. L.A. is down 1-0 as the Jazz win a fun game 1.
FREE PLAY: UTAH -4
OVER/UNDER: OVER 220