The Clippers are coming off their most miraculous and fun win of the season, but can’t be too confident against a good Spurs team. Check out the full preview of the Clippers’ matchup against the Spurs below.
Where: AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas
When: 5:30 PM PT
How to Watch: Fox Sports Prime Ticket
Projected Starting Lineups
Clippers: Reggie Jackson – Paul George – Kawhi Leonard – Marcus Morris – Ivica Zubac
Spurs: Dejounte Murray – Derrick White – DeMar DeRozan – Keldon Johnson – Jakob Poeltl
Clippers: Pat Beverley Out (Knee), Serge Ibaka Out (Back)
Spurs: LaMarcus Aldridge Out (Held by Team), Rudy Gay Out (Foot), Lonnie Walker IV Out (Wrist), Keita Bates-Diop Out (Hamstring)
The Big Picture
After a disgusting display of basketball for much of the game, the Clippers had an incredibly fun comeback on Monday night against the Hawks. Luke Kennard made every shot he took, Terance Mann dominated going to the rim, and Kawhi Leonard rejoined the game late to close things out. However, one game, however awesome, is just a game. It’s up to the Clippers to keep playing with the energy that the reserve unit did in that game, and to defend with as much focus and intensity. If they don’t learn the lesson from that game and use it as a motivator for future success, it will ultimately mean nothing outside of a fun memory.
As they have been since they traded Kawhi Leonard, the Spurs are somewhere between mediocre and good this year. Their record of 22-18 is impressive in a competitive Western Conference, but there are indicators that they’ve outperformed their record a bit. The Spurs are also somewhat in between eras, with the remnants of bygone glory (LaMarcus Aldridge, Patty Mills, and Rudy Gay) mingling with the next generation (Murray, Johnson, Walker, and Devin Vassell). They are therefore an interesting blend of youthful energy and veteran presence, and are more than capable of beating any team in the NBA on the right night – especially when DeRozan is cooking.
Last Look at this Roster: With the trade deadline tomorrow at 3:00 PM ET, this could be the last time we will get to see this exact roster. The Clippers are active by all accounts, especially in pursuit of a guard, and there’s a chance they make a real deal in the next 20 hours. While it’s possible some fairly inconsequential players (Patrick Patterson, Reggie Jackson) get moved, there are also rumors swirling around Clippers mainstays such as Lou Williams and Beverley. Pat is of course out for this one, but for those Lou fans, enjoy this one, because it’s possible it’s the last chance we get to see him wearing a Clippers jersey.
Limiting Turnovers: A key for any team, the Clippers have been particularly bad at avoiding giveaways this season, which has been a nightmare considering their poor transition defense. The Spurs have several excellent perimeter defenders (Murray, White, and Vassell) who are all adept pickpockets. The Clippers will therefore need to watch their dribbles and passes against this Spurs’ defense – liveball turnovers are simply killer.
That about does it for this preview of the Clippers’ game against the Spurs. Comment on the game below!