The Los Angeles Clippers look to even their
Los Angeles Clippers vs. Utah Jazz
Thursday, June 10, 2021 – 10:00 PM EDT at Vivint Smart Home Arena
The Jazz opened as 2.5-point favorites at Bookmaker and over at FiveThirtyEight, they also have the Jazz at -2.5. This leaves no point gap between the projections and the actual odds. We need at least two points between the projections and the lines before we lay any serious wood.
FiveThirtyEight gives the Jazz a 60 percent chance to win. The equivalent moneyline is -150. For support, we turn to USA Today’s Jeff Sagarin’s projections; he has the Jazz at -3.80 using his Rating numbers, and at -2.78 using his eigenvector analysis. Is there some room to grab potential betting value with the Clippers +2.5 at Heritage?
Paul George Has to Step Up!
Paul George did get 20 points on Tuesday's 112-109 loss in Game 1 but he was just 4-for-17 from the field and 3-for-8 from 3-point range. The Clippers won't have a chance in this series if he plays like that! Unlike other players, the Playoff P or Pandemic P jokes are a direct shot at George's performance on the court and you can tell they’ve caused some type of anxiety issue.
There was a time when Paul George was upset with a teammate in Indiana for not letting him take the last shot in a playoff game but now it looks like he's scared to fail! Just look at the highlights! The release on his shots lacks confidence, he defers and is shying away from the moment. If I were him I would put down my phone for now and just go to the games with a clear head. Basketball is 90 percent mental and he's solely playing off talent right now. That will not be enough against a team like the Jazz!
Unlike George, Donovan Mitchell is not afraid of the moment. Mitchell is always in attack mode, but smart, his strength/quickness combo is crazy, he ha a dangerous in-between game, can get to the line at will and is a nightmare to switch with. He carried the Jazz with his 45 points in Game 1 while Rudy Gobert legitimately changed the game with his defensive presence, making the Clippers scared to go into the paint. Jordan Clarkson hit 6 of his 14 3-point attempts to finish with 18 points in 28 minutes off the bench and Bojan Bogdanovic added 18 points of his own, helping carry the load for Mike Conley (plus-7.1 Offensive Box Plus/Minus in the playoffs), who missed the game with a mild hamstring strain and is questionable for Thursday.
Utah has a legit system, they defend and head coach Quin Snyder makes adjustments, making them a tough opponent for LA. The Jazz were just 17-for-50 (34.0 percent) from 3-point range, down from their 38.9 percent shooting from the regular season (fourth in the NBA). Utah led the league with 43.0 3-point attempts and Los Angeles ranked first, shooting 41.4 percent. The Clippers also shot below their regular season average in Game 1 (16-for-42, 38.1 percent). I can see both teams having positive regression, with Paul George playing much better.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.