Lob City; undergoing repairs
Tonight the Clippers will likely be without both Blake Griffin and Jamaal Crawford, as both are listed as doubtful as of this morning. With those two likely not able to suit up tonight, the NBA Odds have the Clippers as +3 road underdogs, with a total of 214 points. This is only the 14th time the Clippers have been road dogs this season, but it is an area they have excelled in ATS. With Griffin likely down for this one, can the Clippers continue their road underdog streak?
While the Clippers’ defense doesn’t lose much without Griffin, their offense is going to suffer. They don’t have much in the line of reliable big men at the power forward spot. They have Glen Davis who has been with the team for only a short period of time and that’s about it.
This means they are forced to go small, and play four guards or wings players around Deandre Jordan. This does open up a lot of shots and three pointers for the Clippers, however they don’t have anyone reliable to get them post shots. Jordan’s offensive game has developed a ton this season, but he is not yet a reliable post threat with his back to the basket. This will force he pace to quicken.
However with all that, I still think the Clippers are the play here at +3. The Suns are a great home team ATS, however their most recent loss is a bit concerning. They lost to the Lakers by double figures, and if this is a sign of the Suns’ collapse, I am putting my faith in the Clippers.
The Sharp Pick
Chris Paul will pick up some of the offensive slack left behind with both Griffin and Crawford likely out. It will put more responsibility on Jordan in the paint, but all in all, it seems as if the Clippers can manage. I think the books are slightly undervaluing them without Griffin tonight.
Not only will Paul pick up the slack on offense, but he will be crucial in defending Goran Dragic tonight. While the Clippers will have to contend with Eric Bledsoe as well, but Paul being able to take away one of them is going to have a large affect on this game. Without the offense from both of their star guards, the Suns are in jeopardy of losing SU and ATS tonight.
The Clippers are 9-4 ATS this season when playing as road dogs, and tonight is another good example of a winnable game on the road. The Clippers have gone 16-2 SU in their last 18 games, and they have been very good versus the Suns SU this season as well. Phoenix is 1-2 SU against the Clippers this season, as well as 2-5 SU in their last seven against LA.
As I stated above, the loss to the Lakers, really concerns me, and it concerns me enough to fade one of the better ATS teams of this season. Take the points with LA for your basketball picks, and then check out my NBA Picks of the Day as well!
NBA Pick: Clippers +3