Los Angeles Clippers vs Golden State Warriors: Predictions and Odds

Los Angeles Clippers

Head Coach: Doc Rivers {All-Time 863-637 | ORL, BOS, LAC}

The Los Angeles Clippers are currently sandwiched in sixth place in the West between the Portland Trailblazers and the Houston Rockets. A single game separates the Clippers from rising or falling so they will be mindful of a what a loss could do to them and for other teams.

Of late the Clippers have had a difficult patch. In their last ten matches, the Los Angeles Clippers have gone 3-7 and are on a four game losing streak. The Clippers will not face a sub-.500 team until January 4th against Phoenix so they need to keep their holiday record in the green.

Golden State Warriors

Head Coach: Steve Kerr {All-Time 286-74 | GSW}

The Golden State Warriors sit third in the Western Conference, just a game back from the first place Denver Nuggets. A single win would boost them to first place, which has been a jockey match between themselves, the Thunder, and the Nuggets all season.

After what was a four-game win streak from Dec 3 to Dec 10, the Warriors have gone 2-2 against three Western Conference teams and the league-leading Toronto Raptors. Charged with Christmas day duties, the Golden State Warriors will surely want to leave this match on a high before the second of a back-to-back against the Clippers hometown rival the Los Angeles Lakers.

What’s At Stake?

Not only conference rivals, but divisional rivals the Los Angeles Clippers and the Golden State Warriors have met many times before. In 151 regular season matches, the Golden State Warriors lead the all-time series 88-63.

Should the Golden State Warriors win this match, they would be shifted into first place in the Western Conference.

Should the Los Angeles Clippers win this match, they would tie for fourth in the West with the Portland Trailblazers and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Questions to answer

Can the Clippers shore up their defence?

Will the Warriors take care of the ball?

We are going to compare the Los Angeles Clippers and the Golden State Warriors in an attempt to see who has the advantage in this matchup.

The Clippers are 19th in Defensive Rating

Looking at the Clippers roster they aren’t exactly the leagues example for defence. While they sport one of the stoutest NBA defenders in Patrick Beverly, beyond him there’s no single player whose calling card can be considered their defence.

The Clippers allow teams to shoot 45% from the field while also fouling their opponent an absolute ton. Averaging 25.6 free throw attempts allowed for the game, the Clippers tend to let teams beat them from the line rather than get easy shot.

Against the Warriors the Clippers will be facing off against a team with weapons at every single position. They will not be able to key in on players for fear of a cut or swing that will create an easier shot. The Clippers will need to defend well straight up, they just might not have the personnel to do so.

The Warriors are ranked 20th in Turnovers

If there’s any criticism of the Warriors throughout their incredible winning run, it is that there are times in which the Warriors tend to “coast”.

Nowhere in the Warriors game is that mentality more apparent than in their turnovers. Averaging 15 turnovers per game, the Warriors are in the bottom third when it comes to allowing their opponents extra possessions.

A part of the Warriors’ lack of ball security likely comes from their wealth of options on offence. Every player can call a play, every player can get the team a bucket when needed. Ball security is important, but clearly the Warriors can still do without it considering their top ranking in the NBA.

Los Angeles Clippers Roster Notes

G Lou Williams (hamstring) is listed as day-to-day.

G Jerome Robinson (foot) remains out indefinitely.

F Luc Mbah a Moute (knee) remains out indefinitely.

Golden State Warriors Roster Notes

C Damian Jones (torn pectoral) acknowledged that he is likely going to miss the rest of the season.

C DeMarcus Cousins (achilles) was a full-participant in practice Tuesday and is listed as questionable against the Clippers.

Danilo Gallinari is the Picture of Consistency

Now entering his tenth NBA season, Danilo Gallinari has gone from a volume scorer to a versatile stretch big who is shooting with respectable efficiency. So far this season, Danilo Gallinari is averaging 19.1 points per game and 6.0 rebounds per game all while converting on 44% from the field and 45% from three.

More impressive than his traditional totals, Gallinari has shown consistency regardless of game style. In wins, Gallo has shot 46% from the field and 45% from three. In losses, Gallinari shoots similarly, 41% from the field and 45% from three.

Gallinari has shown that he is a dangerous offensive option in any game. Able to score from anywhere on the court while maintaining the size to take advantage of most matchups. Against the Warriors, Gallo will have his work cut out for him as the Warriors will send a myriad of defensive options his way.

Kevin Durant is… Still Kevin Durant

While injuries plagued the Warriors’ early season, there has been little to suggest they are not soon to be back on track as the best team in the NBA. A large part of that sustained success while the likes of Curry, Green, and Cousins have been out is the fact that Kevin Durant has been such a prolific scoring option.

Only three times this season has Durant scored less than 20 points in a game. In fourteen different contests, Durant has scored 30 points or more. It should be said that in the small sample size of the Warriors losses, a key factor lies in the fact that Durant shoots 26% from three in losses.

It is always an unenviable task when a teams way to success is to stop a player from getting his points. It is near impossible when that opponent is the inimitable offensive juggernaut that is Kevin Durant. The Clippers are certainly not one of the NBA’s defensive examples, so don’t be surprised to see another big game from Durant.

Los Angeles Clippers at Golden State Warriors Predictions and Odds

The odds will be updated as they are made available.