The Phoenix Suns allowed the Los Angeles Clippers to get out to a 20-5 lead, a mistake that would cost them the chance to close the series in five games. Suns Head Coach Monty Williams stated that “the desperation has to be there” when the Suns head to Los Angeles to face the Clippers on Wednesday. Phoenix has one of the most dynamic teams in the NBA, but their inexperience was on full display Monday night.
The Los Angeles Clippers had their backs against the wall on Monday, facing elimination. Under extreme pressure to lead the Clippers, SF Paul George snagged a playoff-best 41-points. This outing, coupled with thirteen rebounds, secured victory for Los Angeles. However, George wasn’t the only Clippers player with a big night.
With Game 6 being another win-or-go-home scenario for the Clippers, they’ll need another similar performance on Wednesday. The Suns are in a precarious position. A loss here ties the series at 3-3, giving the Clippers a chance to win the conference finals in Phoenix.
The Suns may have underestimated the Clippers once they were up 3-1
After Game 4 closed, the Phoenix Suns were up 3-1 in the series, but something changed with the chance to knock their opponent out of the series. It seemed like the fire that drove the Suns past the Los Angeles Lakers and the Denver Nuggets had been extinguished. Down 91-78 at the end of the third quarter, the Suns needed to outscore the Clippers by a large margin in the fourth.
Needless to say, Phoenix was unable to close the game and the series with a win. Their sluggish play even garnered the attention of the head coach, who noted the team couldn’t continue to play with a “show-up mentality.”
Clippers were sure to call out Paul George critics after a big win on Monday
The only thing bothersome about the LA Clippers’ players coming out in droves to protect Paul George is the fact that they were absent when they were down 3-1. What’s most important, though, is that the players surrounding George not only protect him but do their part on offense as well.
We saw a rejuvenated Clippers team on Monday, a team that understood one more loss put them out of the playoffs. PG Reggie Jackson scored 23-points, SF Marcus Morris Sr. had 22-points on the night, and even C DeMarcus Cousins scored 15-points coming off the bench. The Clippers can even the series if those players and the rest of the Clippers team do their part, instead of relying on Paul George.
Suns vs Clippers, who’s the best bet on Wednesday? Suns -1
The Suns have gotten a dose of their own medicine after losing game five, and Head Coach Monty Williams will express the importance of closing the series on Wednesday. Phoenix plays much better as a unit and has defeated the Clippers at home before.
Although the Clippers had a flash of dominance in two games of this series, their problem has always been with consistency. The Phoenix Suns will close the Western Conference Finals with a win, covering the spread.
Phoenix Suns -1.