There is not much love between the two Los Angeles teams, but actually the Lakers may have done the Clippers a huge favour in this post-season by showing them the way, how to beat the Suns.
The Clippers lost in game one while running along with the Suns, but they made right conclusions - tightened up their defence and slowed down the pace for game 2. It lead to a blow out and easy win for the Clippers by 122-97. Using their size advantage Clippers posted its big guys (much the same as the Lakers did) and as the Suns really lack low-post presence Brand and Kaman filled the basket and took as many rebounds as the Suns team all together. The Clippers advantage in rebounding was huge (57 vs 26).
Mike Dunleavy learned the lesson in a hard way. In the first game of the series Los Angeles played the high tempo game Phoenix offered and they lost. Brand and Kaman, who were neutralized by the quick pace in Game One took advantage of more controlled sets in Game Two. If the Clippers will keep exploiting their size advantage the Suns chances to win are very slim.
The Suns have come from long series with the Lakers they have had a play-off game in every second day for a 16 days in a row now. As they basically use only 7 players, physical and mental exhaustion starts to take its toll. The Clippers have a home crowd at their side now and they surely know that in order to win, they have to keep killing the tempo to take the “wings” away from the Suns. We expect the Suns once again have no answer to stop opponent’s big guys and the Clippers to take the win here. Medium stakes on spread line.
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