Line: Clippers -9. Total 195.5. The Jazz now have an opportunity to host the Clippers in Utah and maintain home court advantage.
This should be a winning formula for the Clippers moving forward, so Utah has to find a way to remove its frequency. Throughout the regular season Gobert was 1st in the league in blocks and 4th in rebounds and that is not something you can easily get back. Not true. He was laying on the court unable to move for nearly 10 of those seconds.
Regular-season results aside, it is tempting to project the Jazz - with Gobert - as the better team in this series.
The Clippers made the adjustment to involve Jordan more in Game 2.
The injury left a huge void for the Jazz to fill because Gobert is one of the top candidates for NBA Defensive Player of the Year.
The Jazz found two players to step up big on Saturday night. Matched up nearly minute-for-minute against All-Star Gordon Hayward, the long-armed prince hassled his mark into a 5-for-15 shooting night, although Hayward managed a team-high 20 points on the back of 3 threes and 7 free throws. The contest hinged on LA's ability to squeeze points out of crevices because its outside shooting was missing in action for the second straight game. He finished with 20 points on 5-of-15 shooting. In the past three seasons he's averaged 1.2 dunks per game. The Clippers led the game from start to finish and opened up a 13 point lead in the first quarter. As the saying goes, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it". "I'm trying to return the favor for him and do what I'm supposed to be doing while he's out". If this series blows up and goes wrong, who knows what this roster will look like next year? Game 2 wouldn't have the same feel to it. Los Angeles was hot coming into the playoffs.
By all appearances, Game 2 had the aesthetics of a convincing Clippers victory. "But realistically both of them are going to break out at some point". I have been an underdog player for a long time in the National Basketball Association. He threw it to Serge and Serge gave it to me.
The Clips are well known for giving up big leads at home. And only one team is facing a long summer if they don't make it to May. It will be the Jazz, not the Clippers, with the home-crowd energy in Game 3 Friday night. However, this smells like a blowout to me.
In a positive sign, Gobert took part in some light practice drills on the court on Monday. Utah sure does miss that tall French guy in the middle. I do see the Clippers getting a double-digit lead and keeping their foot on the pedal.
It seems like a positive omen for the Jazz that they remained competitive in Game 2 even after not being able to match the Clippers' intensity and aggressiveness early on Tuesday while falling behind by double digits.
A big bounce-back spot versus a big let-down spot is a situational spot that I like to play. That year also brought the Donald Sterling racial comments firestorm, though, and the Clippers beat the Golden State Warriors in seven games, but lost in the second round to the Oklahoma City Thunder in six games. Thank God Karl Malone and (John) Stockton didn't listen to people, you know what I mean? "We just take each day a game at a time, and just play, man". The Raptors' starting five for the playoffs have only played together four times before tonight's game.