The Clippers took care of business last night in San Antonio but a win tonight would show that the Clippers have truly turned a corner. One non-basketball thing to watch, however: Today, of course, is the trade deadline. It will be interesting to see if anyone is not getting on the plane back home over the next hour or two. With all that said, read on for a full preview of the Clippers’ back-to-back game against the Spurs.
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
The Clippers have won three straight going into this back-to-back. They are currently in third in the Western Conference, and just one game back from the Suns (two back in the loss column). A win tonight would perhaps mean the Clippers have moved on from the funk they were in pre- and post-All Star Break. Notwithstanding the trade deadline, tonight’s game against the Spurs will also be a good test of the Clippers’ ability to handle lesser teams without playing down to their level, especially coming off two nice wins.
While the Clippers should be happy with last night, they should not get too comfortable. The team shot an incredible 55.7% from the field and 51.5% from three. The Spurs, on the other hand, shot 45% and 31%. When the Clippers lost to the Mavericks last week, we here at 213Hoops were quick to point to the Clippers missing shots, insisting Clips Nation not get too down on the team. Well, we should not get too high when the inverse happens. The Spurs could easily come out hot tonight and/or the Clippers could go cold again.
Again, the Clippers might be active today at the deadline, so we might see an impromptu rotation change. And, finally, the Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have been playing back-to-backs this season, but I would not be surprised if Lue tries to play it safe with them tonight.
Trade deadline essentials: Be sure to follow 213Hoops founders Rob and Lucas for all trade deadline related news. And, if anything happens, be sure to check out the 213Hoops podcast, The Lob The Jam The Podcast.
Luke Kennard: After being the hero of Monday night’s game against the Hawks, Luke got twelve and a half minutes (he earned his first first-quarter minutes since early this month, per Andrew Greif). Hopefully he gets more chances to show Monday was not an apparition and that he can contribute meaningful minutes on a nightly basis.
Lou Williams: Congratulations to Lou Williams, who reached the 15,000 point threshold last night against the Spurs.
That about does it for this preview of the Clippers’ second game against the Spurs. Stay tuned for any trade deadline updates and comment on the flurry of moves below!