MATCHUP AT A GLANCE
When: Thursday, October 24, 2019 at 10:30 PM
Where: Chase Center in San Francisco, California
Point Spread: LA Clippers -1.5
Betting Total: 225.5
The Los Angeles Clippers opened up their season with many people’s pick to win the Western Conference, the Los Angeles Lakers. No matter, the Clippers handled their business and defeated LeBron and the Lakers. Thursday night, they travel up the coast to play the Western Conference Champion Golden State Warriors at Chase Center.
Clippers Off to a Fast Start
The Los Angeles Clippers won their opener 112-102 Tuesday night at Staples Center against the Lakers. Kawhi Leonard shined in his Clippers debut, scoring 30 points and the Clips’ bench was a strong point as the Clippers sent an early message to the rest of the conference that they won’t be going anywhere soon.
Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell led the bench with 21 and 17 points respectively as the Clippers began their 50th season in franchise history and 36th in Los Angeles. Williams and Harrell were the league’s top-scoring reserve duo and they picked up right where they left off as the Clippers’ bench outscored the Lakers’ bench 60-19.
Never until now have they been considered the favorites to win the NBA Championship. Head Coach Doc Rivers shrugged off the hype when the question was asked to him regarding the title, saying, “It’s game one of 82. Next question.” Rivers is trying to instill that kind of mindset in his players too, knowing that the Western Conference is loaded.
Warriors Look to Pick Up Pieces and Regroup
The Golden State Warriors were poised to win their third straight NBA title a season ago, but injuries to Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson in the finals put the celebration on hold. Durant then left for Brooklyn, leaving a void in the lineup for the Warriors.
Thompson had knee surgery after the Finals and will be out until the all-star break. Even still, the Warriors don’t intend on tanking.
They worked a sign-and-trade to acquire DeAngelo Russell and traded the aging Andre Igoudala to Memphis. They also extended Draymond Green to keep him put.
The Warriors’ starting five to start the season will likely be Stephen Curry, Russell, Green, Willie Cauley-Stein, and Kevon Looney. Curry will most definitely be keyed on by opposing defenses, meaning Green will likely be left open and has to hit open jumpers that he missed last season.
He only shot 28% from three-point range a season ago and many wonder if he can be a go-to guy. The intriguing piece to all of this is Russell, who last season at age 23 became an all-star for the first time in his career. He led the Brooklyn Nets to the playoffs last season as well.
Betting Lines and Predictions
MyBookie has a moneyline on the game of Los Angeles -120. The spread is Los Angeles -1.5 and the over/under is 225.5. The Warriors have so many question marks and the Clippers are so good defensively.
There are questions as to where points are going to come from with Golden State. The safe play here is to take the Clippers and roll with my pick to not only win the West, but the NBA title as well.