Los Angeles Clippers vs Golden State Warriors: Predictions, Odds and Roster Notes

How to Watch

What: Los Angeles Clippers vs Golden State Warriors

Where: Oracle Arena in Oakland, CA

When: Saturday, April 13th at 8:00 PM EST

How (TV): ABC

Los Angeles Clippers (Away)

Head Coach: Doc Rivers {All-Time 894-658 | ORL, BOS, LAC}

Season Record: 48-34, 8th in the West

Projected Starting Five: (G) Patrick Beverly – (G) Landry Shamet – (G) Shai Gilgeous-Alexander – (F) Danilo Gallinari – (C) Ivica Zubac

The Los Angeles Clippers entered the season with low expectations, many thought they would finish below their arena rivals the Los Angeles Lakers. Instead, the Clippers rallied to finish eighth in the Western Conference.

Despite some drastic moves at the trade deadline, the Clippers were solid to finish the season. In their last ten games, the Clippers were 6-4, topped by a 143-137 overtime win over the Jazz in their last game of the season.

Taking on the Golden State Warriors will be no easy task. The Clippers are a capable offensive team, top ten in the league, but their defense ranks in the bottom third. It’ll be a shootout between these two teams.

Golden State Warriors (Home)

Head Coach: Steve Kerr {All-Time 322-88 | GSW}

Season Record: 57-25, 1st in the West

Projected Starting Five: (G) Stephen Curry – (G) Klay Thompson – (F) Kevin Durant – (F) Draymond Green – (C) DeMarcus Cousins

The Golden State Warriors stumbled out of the gate – by their standards. Injured in key positions to start the year, the Golden State Warriors found their rhythm at the turn of 2019. They found their way back to the top of the Western Conference, with a record of 57-25.

The Golden State Warriors closed the season on a 7-3 run in their last ten games. While their schedule was not particularly difficult, it certainly primed them for their post-season performance.

The Golden State Warriors take on a Clippers side that stole one win out of four from them during the regular season. It seems to be the most lopsided matchup in the 2019 playoffs, but the Warriors can’t take Doc Rivers’ scoring machine for granted.

What’s At Stake?

The Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers are state rivals, but the series is very much in favor of the Warriors. In 153 regular season games, the Warriors lead the Clippers 91-63.

These two teams have shared a playoff series once before, in 2014. It was a hard-fought, seven-game series that went the way of the Clippers.

Both teams look to get off to a good start by taking home game one.

Health Headlines the Warriors Concerns

Once again, this time near the end of the season, Stephen Curry rolled his ankle. Removing him from his last game against the Pelicans and putting him in a state of uncertainty going forward.

Head coach Steve Kerr maintains that Curry’s ankle is fine, however, Curry’s injury history around his ankle gives a cause for further inspection.

Curry is expected to play, but don’t be surprised to see heavier minutes given to Shaun Livingston and Quinn Cook to give him more rest. Both provide valuable skills to the Warriors lineup – shooting, defense – so the team likely won’t suffer from their extended minutes.

Patrick Beverley Has His Hands Full

There isn’t a more fearless defender in the NBA. Beverley may be small in stature, but he has faced off against the most difficult defensive assignments in the NBA, at any position.

In this game, he will be tasked with controlling Stephen Curry, but don’t be surprised to see him matched with Durant – as we’ve seen during the regular season.

Yes, Beverley’s size hurts him significantly. However, he is such an irritant in close-quarters and in the full-court, that Beverly succeeds at denying the ball before it even gets to the threat. A full 48 minutes of that is unlikely. But timeliness may be more valuable than consistency.

How Will the Warriors Utilize Durant?

With uncertainty surrounding the state of Stephen Curry, the Golden State Warriors are sure to lean even more into their two-time Finals MVP Kevin Durant. He leads the Warriors in both 2017 and 2018 by taking advantage of opponents in isolation.

As the tempo slows, Kevin Durant is the optimal asset for the Warriors in the half-court. A near seven-foot player with shooting touch from anywhere on the court strives in isolation more than a swing offense.

The result will be dependent on Durant though. The Warriors haven’t played iso-ball significantly in the regular season, so going that way will only be beneficial if Durant can convert efficiently.

Energy, Energy, Energy!

The first time that the Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Golden State Warriors, the Clips bench stars went off. Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell both posted 23+ points on the evening to lead their team over the reigning champions.

Montrezl Harrell was a force in the paint, shooting 10-13 on the night while contributing to defeating the Warriors on the glass 49-46. Williams, on the other hand, struggled from the floor, but his savvy on offense helped him to 14-14 shooting from the free-throw line.

Stephen Curry was missing from that game, but it is important to note that the Clippers bench pieces can certainly outpace those of the Warriors. While the rotation will shorten, spurts of energy from the bench are what the Clippers need to win.

Los Angeles Clippers Roster Notes

G Patrick Beverly – 9 Apr 2019 – Day To Day (Hip) – Beverley was listed as probable for Wednesday’s (Apr 10) game.

F Danilo Gallinari – 9 Apr 2019 – Day To Day (Ankle) – Gallinari was listed as probable for Wednesday’s (Apr 10) game.

Golden State Warriors Roster Notes

G Stephen Curry – 9 Apr 2019 – Out (Foot) – Curry has been ruled OUT for Wednesday’s (Apr 10) game.

G Klay Thompson – 9 Apr 2019 – Day To Day (Knee) – Thompson has been ruled OUT for Tuesday’s (Apr 9) game.

G-F Andre Iguodala – Day To Day (Toe) – Iguodala has been ruled OUT for Tuesday’s (Apr 9) game.

C Damian Jones – 8 Mar 2019 – Out (Torn Left Pectoral) – Head coach Steve Kerr said its doubtful that Jones returns during the playoffs, according to a report from Anthony Slater of The Athletic.

X-Factors: Ivica Zubac (LAC) vs DeMarcus Cousins (GSW)

The matchup in the middle is one to watch between the Clippers and the Warriors. Cousins is one of the NBA’s most capable offensive options in the post, while Zubac is a young and upcoming defensive center who has had his fair share of impressive performances.

Ivica Zubac

Center | 7-1, 240lb (216cm, 108kg) | Bosnia and Herzegovina | Exp. 2 Years

9.4 PPG | 1.5 APG | 7.7 RPG | 0.4 SPG | 0.9 BPG | 1.4 TOV | .538 FG% | – 3P%

At 7-1, 240lbs Ivica Zubac certainly has the body to compete with DeMarcus Cousins. His size and length are unmatched on the team since the departure of Boban Marjanovic.

Where Zubac will excel is in defending the pick and roll with Cousins involved. He still maintains the length to drop deep to stop the drive and the foot speed to recover on the roll-man.

Since joining the Clippers Zubac has been excellent, but he’s yet to experience the nature of playoff basketball in the NBA. They’ll attempt to exploit him at every move, so Zubac will have to show maturity beyond his years.

DeMarcus Cousins

Center | 6-11, 270lb (211cm, 122kg) | Kentucky | Exp. 8 Years

16.3 PPG | 3.6 APG | 8.2 RPG | 1.3 SPG | 1.5 BPG | 2.4 TOV | .480 FG% | .274 3P%

DeMarcus Cousins hasn’t really seen much of Ivica Zubac this year. He was injured for most of the first half of the season but did see him shortly when he was a Laker.

The gameplay is out on Cousins and it is clear what the Clippers want him to do, shoot from range. Cousins is deadly in the post and shooting from range is just the lesser of two evils.

He has struggled in the past against centers that can match his physicality – Marc Gasol, Jonas Valanciunas – so Cousins will definitely test the young center in the paint before he extends his range.

Los Angeles Clippers at Golden State Warriors Predictions and Odds

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