The Utah Jazz and the Los Angeles Clippers will meet for the second time in three days, with the former looking to double down on their mastery of the latter.
Catch this game live on Saturday, February 20, at 11 AM, Manila time
HOME TEAM: LA Clippers (21-9, 10-5 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Reggie Jackson
- PG: Patrick Beverley
- SG: Lou Williams
- SF: Marcus Morris Sr.
- C: Serge Ibaka
It’s a shame that the Clippers didn’t have both their top two players in Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in their 114-96 loss to the Jazz on Thursday. But there’s a chance that the pair will make its way back into the court this Saturday after Leonard and George have been upgraded to questionable statuses.
The Clippers will find it difficult to hang with a red-hot and well-oiled machine team that is Utah without Leonard and George, but having just one of them on the floor in the rematch should immensely improve LA’s chances of bouncing back. Lou Williams and Reggie Jackson had 16 and 15 points, respectively, to lead the Clippers in last Thursday’s loss, which also didn’t feature depth guy Luke Kennard (knee, questionable).
Williams, however, had five of the Clippers’ 16 turnovers. Keeping those errors in check will be extra important for LA, especially since the Jazz are uber-efficient (1.174 points per possession) on offense these days.
The Clippers are fifth in the NBA with a 5-3 ATS record in games after a loss.
ROAD TEAM: Utah Jazz (24-5, 11-3 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
- SG: Donovan Mitchell
- SF: Bojan Bogdanovic
- SF: Joe Ingles
- PF: Royce O’Neale
- C: Rudy Gobert
The Jazz have done numerous amazing things during the course of their current win streak, and among them is the fact that they continue to beat teams despite missing guard Mike Conley.
The Jazz stretched their unbeaten streak to nine games after taking down the Clippers on Thursday, 114-96, with Conley missing his sixth game in a row due to a hamstring injury. Rudy Gobert posted a mammoth double-double of 23 points and 20 rebounds while Donovan Mitchell had 24 points, 8 assists, and 7 assists.
Things could get even better for the Jazz, as Conley appears to be zeroing in on a return. Conley is currently deemed questionable for Saturday’s game against the Clippers, so there’s a chance he’d finally see action after a while. The Clippers, on the other hand, could be missing both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George again.
In the event that either of them or both would be ruled out for Saturday’s game, that would be a huge plus for the Jazz, who are not only winning a bunch of games but have become a reliable team against the spread.
The Jazz own a 75.9 cover percentage (22-7 ATS), so far this season, the best by a mile in the NBA.
The Jazz are simply playing on a higher level than everyone else right now. That and the uncertainty of the availabilities of the Clippers’ top players are why I think Utah will score a 118-107 win in this game.