The Los Angeles Clippers are in last chance saloon when it comes to the NBA Playoffs, as another defeat this weekend against the Dallas Mavericks will mean the end of their season. But, could they take the series to a game seven?
Clippers @ Mavericks Schedule
- When: Friday, June 4th
- Where: American Airlines Center, Dallas
- How To Watch: NBA League Pass
Clippers @ Mavericks Preview
Mavericks On Verge
The Dallas Mavericks stand on the brink of eliminating one of the favourites for the NBA Championship this season. They hold a 3-2 series lead ahead of game six on Friday evening, meaning that one more win will be enough to secure their spot in the Western Conference semi-finals. The Mavericks were outstanding once again in the most recent game against the Clippers on Wednesday evening, as they held on for a 105-100 victory. Dallas started the game strongly, by outscoring the Clippers 35-28 in the first quarter. They pulled further ahead in the third, as they outscored their rivals 33-21.
They allowed the Clippers to almost get back into the game in the final period, but they did just about enough to ensure that they got over the line. Luka Doncic produced one of his best performances for the Mavs, as he scored a remarkable 42 points in 43 minutes on the court. He also added 14 assists and eight rebounds. Tim Hardaway Jr also scored 20 points in the victory. However, no other Dallas player scored more than ten minutes in the victory.
Clippers Facing Another Disappointing End
The defeat on Wednesday means that the Clippers are looking down the barrel of another disappointing exit in the playoffs. They came up short last season against the Denver Nuggets, and the pressure will certainly mount on future plans if they are knocked out at the first hurdle this season. It was the most decisive moments of the game where the Clippers didn’t turn up, as they started both halves slowly, and weren’t able to get back into the game despite their pressure in the final quarter. Paul George and Kawhi Leonard combined for 43 points between them on Wednesday evening, with Paul scoring 23.
Marcus Morris Sr, Nicolas Batum and Reggie Jackson all scored at least ten points in the defeat. It was the Clippers poor efficiency from beyond the arc and the free throw line that was pivotal in this defeat. They only managed to shoot 36.8% from three-point range, which was inferior to the 38.9% recorded by the Mavericks. Meanwhile, they missed five of their attempts from the free-throw line, while the Mavs only missed on two occasions. It is fine margins, but the NBA playoffs is all about the small margins.
Mavericks @ Clippers Prediction
This is a huge night for the Clippers, as they must win on the road to keep the series alive. However, the character that the Mavs have shown throughout this series is hard to look past, as they are attacking and defending like a team. That team spirit will be enough to get them over the line against the Clippers in the series.