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Clippers’ task is not impossible, but it’s not easy – Press Enterprise

There are similarities and one important difference.

The Clippers are back 2-0 down in the series. They are once again teaming up with dynamic players who need special attention.

This time, they returned home after losing two on the street, but those defeats were on the team with the best record in the NBA’s regular season. They have one game streak at Staples Center, It can sound like a library when compared to what we faced in Salt Lake City this week. This may or may not be useful.

Now let’s see what happens as this Western Conference semi-final series against Utah Jazz continues.

I could easily find some flaws on Thursday night. 117-111 decision that gave top-seeded jazz a 2-0 lead At this Best of Seven. Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Patrick Beverley, DeMarcus Cousins ​​… Almost everyone except Steve Ballmer and Chuck the Condor (who didn’t travel) tried to protect Utah star Donovan Mitchell in the first half. did. 27 out of his 37 points.

The Clippers, who started a small lineup in Game 1, started the Ivica’s batch on Thursday night, lagging behind 10-2 in less than two minutes. Here are eight points by Mitchell. They dragged at 21 at the beginning of the third quarter. However, Tyronn Lue’s tinkering also created a zone defense that confused Utah for some time in the second half, resulting in a 46-23 run in a 14-1 / 2 minute span and 101-99 with Reggie Jackson’s three pointers. Brought the lead. 6:37 left.

This may be the Clippers’ biggest problem: the lead lasted all 11 seconds. Mitchell may not have been the man in the fourth quarter, but Rudy Gobert (13 points and 20 rebounds) played the key, and Bojan Bogdanovic and Joe Ingles provided the key 3 points in a dagger. ..

Twice in two games, the Clippers defense has long clamped Utah. In both cases jazz has recovered. Adding the fact that Utah point guard Mike Conley hasn’t played in the series yet due to the “mild” hamstring train in the Memphis series puts an additional burden on Mitchell and Ingress. The Clippers have already blown away the best opportunity to put this series in Hammer Lock.

“We were stagnant. They slowed us down, and it was the credit of TyLue and the staff to do that,” Mitchell later said. “But we haven’t played against the zone for a long time, to get into the paint and find a way to do what we’ve been doing. In addition, we haven’t stopped at all. …. the look they were getting and the way they were getting the bucket felt a bit better controlled than we were, especially in the third quarter. ”

Bogdanovich also provided Leonard with some rugged protection. Leonard finished in the fourth quarter with a quiet 21 points and just 2 points. Throughout the series, both teams have a lot of coordination and strategic quirks, but perhaps the decisive factor is whether the stars play like stars.

“As tough as they are playing, as tough as this match is, but we are through this game, this series, we I feel like there are moments when I’m playing with self-harm, “George said. .. “Once again, this is very difficult, but I’m optimistic that I can control it.”

George has clearly become a favorite target for Utah fans. They booed him violently during the referral and serenade him with “pandemic P” and “overrated” chants throughout the night. At one point he was 13-4 from the field, but finished 18-8 from the field, 27 points from the foul line and 9-9, and the Clippers followed Jackson’s 29 with a 4-8 3-point shot. I did.

In ESPN aired Thursday night, analyst Drisberg mentioned the Clippers’ “casualness” after Jackson and George were replaced in a row on a sloppy pass. It may be an attribute that drives people to see them play the most crazy. It’s not that they haven’t tried, because they obviously do. But sometimes they are too cool to see from school, and George tends to be the most prominent in that regard.

Maybe they need Patrick Beverley more often. As Lou reduced his rotation to 9, he may need more Rajon Rondo, which was a DNP coach’s decision on Thursday night (except for Teransman’s 1:07 in the fourth quarter).

Or maybe this series is just getting better and you haven’t noticed it yet. Keep in mind that the Clippers aren’t the only clubs whose playoffs experience in the bubble last year ended with a 3-1 lead over Denver. Utah it happened in the previous round.

Clippers’ task is not impossible, but it’s not easy – Press Enterprise Source link Clippers’ task is not impossible, but it’s not easy – Press Enterprise

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