The Los Angeles Clippers have the Phoenix Suns right where they want them heading into Game 2 of the Western Conference final. Keeping with a disturbing trend this postseason the Clips lost the opener for the third straight series. In fact, they lost the first two games of those series before storming back to end the season for Dallas and Utah.
The Suns drew first blood on Sunday getting a 40-point triple-double from Devin Booker in a 120-114 payout victory, their eighth straight this postseason. The Suns were positioned as a 6-point favorite on the opening betting line ahead of Tuesday’s Game 2.
Game 2 of the Western Conference final takes place on Tuesday, June 22, 2021 and will air live on ESPN with tip off at 9 p.m. ET from Phoenix Suns Arena.
Clippers vs Phoenix Suns Game 2 Odds
Spread: Los Angeles Clippers +6 | Phoenix Suns -6 [BET NOW]
Money Line: Los Angeles Clippers +184 | Phoenix Suns -220 [BET NOW]
Total: 224 [BET NOW]
Season to Date
The Clippers aren’t going to be rattled by a loss. After all they are used to it this postseason. The only difference is that they don’t have Kawhi Leonard to lean on. Leonard was huge in the Dallas series on both ends of the court after LA dropped the first two games at home. Having an NBA champion and former Finals MVP is a comfort, but the Clips showed they can win games without him.
Heck, they knocked off the best team during the regular season in consecutive games with Kawhi on the shelf to advance past the second round for the first time. And while that’s a huge deal the Clips aren’t going to settle. And they should have all kinds of confidence after vanquishing the top-seeded Jazz by winning four straight games and going 4-0 ATS.
With Chris Paul at less than 100 percent in the Lakers series, the Suns struggled. That wasn’t the case on Sunday with Paul sitting out due to COVID. We shouldn’t be surprised that the Suns have played as well as they have this entire season. And the young core got some valuable experience without their veteran leader. Paul is listed as day-to-day as he works through the protocols, but the Suns didn’t need him in Game 1 with Booker taking over.
The stage couldn’t have been bigger for Booker to amass his first triple-double. In an efficient performance, Booker hit 15 of 29 shots for 40 points along with 13 rebounds and 11 assists as the Suns won and covered their eighth straight playoff game.
Los Angeles Clippers
Leonard didn’t travel to Phoenix for the opener and the team is being tight-lipped about his condition. Tyronn Lue said Leonard is getting treatment on his knee and his status for Game 2 is unknown. It is after all a short trip from LA to Phoenix in case Leonard is feeling better. The likely scenario is that the Clips will be without him for at least another game. It also hurt that Marcus Morris was slowed in the second half. Morris is averaging 11.8 points during the postseason.
Paul George has been the catalyst with Leonard out. He scored a playoff-high 37 points in game 5 against the Jazz and followed with 28 in the series clincher. George did his best on Sunday dropping 34 points. Other guys are stepping up with Leonard out. “I think this was a good feel-out game to see adjustments. We have been great at adjusting,” George said after Game 1.
The Suns are the hottest team on the planet having won and covered eight straight games. They are 9-2 SU and ATS this postseason and the offense has picked it up after a rough few games in the Lakers series.
After being held to 102 points or less in each of the first four games, the Suns have scored at least 116 in each of the last five games while reaching the 120-point mark four times. Booker leads the way averaging 29 points after his outburst on Sunday and five other players are in double figures. The Suns cashed the OVER in their last two games and in four of their last six.
It also looks like Paul is close to a return. He’s listed as day-to-day, but thanks to their sweep of Denver in the second round he’s had time to recover. Cameron Payne played a large role in the Lakers series with Paul dealing with a shoulder ailment and he got the starting nod on Sunday scoring 11 points with nine assists.
Clippers vs Suns Game 2 Predictions
Our best bets: Los Angeles Clippers +6 and OVER 224
The teams have played close games this season with LA’s 10-point win in April the largest in the season series. With the spread climbing to Clippers +6 and after seeing what they did in the first two rounds, it’s hard to not back the visitors.
Check out today’s NBA odds.