The Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Clippers will clash in the second round of the postseason in what should be an enticing matchup that could really go either way. The Clippers will be running on fumes entering this series after a seven-game slugfest with the Dallas Mavericks in the first round. Meanwhile, Utah will be well-rested and have home-court advantage which could be the difference-maker in the opening game.
Ahead of Game 1, here's everything you need to know:
(1) Utah Jazz vs. (4) Los Angeles Clippers
- Date: Tuesday, June 8 | Time: 10 p.m. ET
- Location: Vivint Arena -- Salt Lake City, Utah
- TV: TNT | Live stream: TNT
- Odds: LAC +145; UTA -165 | O/U: 220.5 (via William Hill Sportsbook)
Jazz: While the health of Mike Conley is certainly a concern, the Jazz have a wealth of depth to cover up for his absence if he is to miss the first game of this series. However, being without Conley for an extended period of time could prove detrimental as he's the only other consistent shot-creator the Jazz have outside of Donovan Mitchell. His ability to score off the dribble, execute in a number of ways in the pick-and-roll and knock down 3s is a huge asset that Utah will be missing if he's unavailable. If he does play -- and is 100 percent -- then the Jazz should feel great about their chances to take Game 1 in this series against a tough Clippers team.
Clippers: It will be interesting to see how L.A. starts this series out, given it went complete small ball after the first two games in their series with Dallas. Going with that approach certainly has its benefits, floor spacing and more shooters being two of them, but by going small they'll also be sacrificing size on defense, where a towering Rudy Gobert will await them in the pain. Going back to Ivica Zubac, or if Serge Ibaka can get healthy again would help to at least contain Gobert, but Utah could play Zubac off the floor just like the Mavs did and there's no guarantee Ibaka is healthy. A lot of decisions for Ty Lue and the Clippers to make at the start of this series.
While I picked the Clippers to win this series, I think the Jazz will come out stronger having fresher legs and more rest. Plus that Utah crowd is always a factor for Jazz games, which will make things even more difficult for the Clippers in Game 1. Pick: Jazz -4