The Western Conference Finals will feature more than just the Los Angeles Clippers and the Phoenix Suns. The Clippers have a complicated playoff history.
It’s a long, difficult road filled with blowout losses, blown leads, and early dismissals. It has lingered on far longer than any current players.
The Clippers’ playoff history has been changed by just reaching the conference finals. Even more impressive is the fact that they won series against Dallas (0-2 deficits) and Utah (0-2 deficits).
They also play in Hollywood so why not add drama? They are back at home, following the Suns 0-2.
Thursday night’s Game 3 will be played at Staples Center. FanDuel Sportsbook has the Clippers as a 1-point favorite. Game 3 is Thursday night at Staples Center.
The Clippers tweeted Wednesday that Kawhi Leonard, a five-time All-Star, is still out due to a right knee injury. He sustained injuries in Game 4 against Utah. Leonard returned to LA for rehabilitation after the Phoenix loss.
After being out for two games, Chris Paul has been listed as probable in league’s injury reports to return to the Suns.
Paul George stated that it would be even more difficult to return to Paul after his impending return.
Paul would love nothing more than to win at his old team’s court. He, Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan and DeAndre Jordan have transformed the Clippers’ image from a woebegone franchise into an exciting contender. Paul was named MVP of the 2013 All-Star Game. The team’s nickname, “Lob City”, was established by Paul’s alley-oop passes Griffin and Jordan for dunks.
This trio was part in a massive collapse in 2015. In the second round, the Clippers were 3-1 ahead of James Harden and Houston Rockets. However, they lost the final three games 4-3.
Paul was fired after six seasons in which the Clippers failed to advance past the second round. Griffin and Jordan were his successors in Los Angeles.
These were just a few of the many playoff failures.
Denver was 3-1 in the bubble last season with Leonard and George in their first season together. They looked poised to make their conference finals debut.
They lost Game 5 by a mere 15 points, then lost Game 6 by 19 points. Finally, they collapsed in the fourth quarter and lost Game 7. Doc Rivers was eventually fired.
Coach Tyronn Lue made several adjustments to the Clippers’ first year of coaching. He was the one to start 7-foot Ivica Zurbac and Patrick Beverley in Game 2 in place of Terence Mann or Nicolas Batum’s small-ball team.
Guard Reggie Jackson stated that they called T-Lue Bill Belichick and made all the adjustments. He’s going to find a solution, and we will, too, just like we have always done.