Team Records: Portland (39-19) at LA Clippers (40-21)
Game Info: 7:30 PM-TV on CSNNW/ESPN, Radio on 620 AM
ESPN Announcers: Ryan Ruocco, Jon Barry
Vegas Line: LA Clippers -2
Refs: Scott Foster, David Guthrie, Gary Zielinski
The Skinny: The Blazers look to make it four wins in a row as they take on the Clippers in the first half of a tough back to back set. The Clippers have gone 7-2 since losing Blake Griffin to injury, which is more than a little impressive.
Last Time They Met: The Blazers got buried by ex-Blazers Jamal Crawford in a 100-94 home loss.
Projected Clippers Lineup:
PF-Spencer Hawes (Washington-8th Season)-6.7 PPG, 4 RPG,1.2 APG.
SF-Jordan Hamilton (Texas-4th Season)-3.3 PPG, 1 RPG, .3 APG.
C-DeAndre Jordan (Texas A&M-7th Season)-11.2 PPG, 14.4 RPG, .6 APG
SG-JJ Redick (Duke-9th Season)-14.7 PPG, 2 RPG, 1.6 APG.
PG-Chris Paul (Wake Forest-10th Season)-18.2 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 10 APG.
Player to Watch: DeAndre Jordan (pictured at right)-Okay maybe he can’t shoot free throws but he’s a darn good player besides. DeAndre Jordan, laughed at when his offer sheet was matched a few years ago, is at worst LA’s third best player. Jordan is an amazing rebounder, who has not been held under 15 boards in any given in almost a month. He can finish on put backs or on lob passes and is fun to watch. He’s got decent defensive skills too, blocking 2.3 shots per game. He may not be CP3 or Griffin but DeAndre is important to LA’s success even if he doesn’t get the same hype.
Did You Know?: The Clippers are nearly 17 points better per 100 possessions when CP3 is on the court, 114.4 when he’s playing, 97.9 when he’s not.
Song of the Day: “Talking Union” by Pete Seeger. In support of the MLS Players Union in their battle over a new CBA with the MLS owners. Enjoy:
LA Clippers: Out-PF Blake Griffin (Elbow), Questionable-SG Jamal Crawford (Calf), SF Matt Barnes (Hamstring)
Re-Evaluating the Clippers: Staying Afloat
There were plenty of people, including yours truly, that wondered whether the Clippers would even make the playoffs when Griffin went out. They were facing a daunting stretch without their second best player (CP3 is their best). Yet, they didn’t only make it through this stretch decently, they are currently 7-2 without Andre Miller’s least favorite player on the court. They might not be tittle contenders but it is certainly proof that they are more than just Lob City, they are a ship that won’t go down, even as rough as the seas may get.
The Bottom Line:
Portland wins if: They limit LA’s 3 point makes. The Clippers are going to get their dunks in but dunks alone will not win them games. If Portland can limit their 3 point effectiveness, they should win Wednesday.
LA Clippers win if: They are the first to 100 points. Yes Lawler’s law is dumb but the fact is that Lawler’s law has gone 32-2 in Clippers games so far this year. Also the Clippers aren’t great at coming from behind late so if they want to win they need to be the first to 100 on Wednesday.