After a close Game 1 loss, the LA Clippers will aim to regain their footing and steal a home game from the Phoenix Suns in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals on Tuesday at 6 p.m.
Both teams will once again be down a superstar. For LA, Kawhi Leonard will miss his fourth straight game with what the Clippers organization has described as a “right knee sprain.” It has still yet to be confirmed whether this is an ACL injury. If that is indeed the case, the severity of the injury will determine just how long Leonard will be sidelined. If it is just a grade 1 tear, it’s not out of the question for him to return at some point in this series. However, if it turns out to be a full tear, he will be out for the remainder of the postseason without question.
For Phoenix, Chris Paul remains out due to health and safety protocols. It is still unclear whether he has contracted COVID-19, though former teammate Matt Barnes stated that Paul confirmed to him that he had been vaccinated. Stuck at home during Game 1, Paul elected to make the most of a tough situation and enjoy some time with his kids.
As evidenced by Game 1, the Clippers still have their hands full with the Suns despite Paul’s absence. Devin Booker contributed one of the most dominant performances of his career, dropping his first-ever triple double: 40 points, 11 assists and 13 rebounds in 44 minutes of play. LA is going to have to find a way to limit either his playmaking or his scoring prowess, because they essentially allowed him both in Game 1.
Paul George will be called upon to deliver yet again with his costar absent. He only played 39 minutes in Game 1, as Head Coach Tyronn Lue was concerned about his roster’s level of fatigue following a quick turnaround from Game 6 of the Conference Semifinals to Game 1 of the Conference Finals. Look for a shorter rotation and for George to be given a shorter rest in Game 2, as LA’s offense tends to struggle when he is off the floor.
How to Watch
Matchup: LA Clippers (0-01) at Phoenix Suns (1-0)
Date: Tuesday, June 22
Time: 9:00 p.m. PT
Venue: Phoenix Suns Arena
Spread: Suns -4.5
Moneyline: Clippers +154, Suns -184
Point Total: O/U 223
Odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook