Los Angeles Clippers (32-28) at Phoenix Suns (32-27)
Game Info: Thursday, February 16, 2023 at 10:00 p.m. EST (Footprint Center)
Betting Odds: Clippers (-1.5) / Over/Under (TBD)
Pick: Suns (+1.5)
Two Western Conference teams with Finals aspirations will meet up on Thursday night when the Los Angeles Clippers head off on the road to matchup versus the Phoenix Suns in the Footprint Center.
Los Angeles has been a dysfunctional bunch for parts of the season, with injuries hampering their success for large parts. Despite this, they will come into Phoenix fully healthy for the first time in what feels like forever. When they are fully healthy (which they are at the moment), they are a far superior team than their 32-28 record displays, so the Suns are sure to not take them lightly in their upcoming clash. Over the last 4 games, they are a mediocre 2-2 SU and 1-3 ATS, so they will need a better effort on the road against the Suns, even if they will still be without newly acquired Kevin Durant. Currently sitting in the 5 hole in the West and only 3 games up from the Trail Blazers who are the first team out of the Playoffs, Head Coach Tyronn Lue will know how important every single game is to get the best out of his players as the season comes to its last stretch.
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Phoenix is still buzzing over their blockbuster trade to get Kevin Durant from the Brooklyn Nets that was done a week ago, although it did come with a big cost. Until he is back on the floor, the trio of Deandre Ayton, Chris Paul, and Devin Booker will be tasked with even bigger roles than they are used to, as Cam Johnson and Mikal Bridges were shipped off to Brooklyn in the trade. As of late, they are 11-3 SU in their last 14 games (8-6 ATS in that stretch), good enough for 4th in the Western Conference. They will understand how important it is to secure a home series in the first round of the Playoffs, so this upcoming game will bring the best out of Phoenix on their home floor. Thinking about Booker, Paul, Ayton, and KD on the same floor is utterly terrifying for the rest of the league, but until then, they will have to make things happen without the former MVP. We shall see if they are up or the test as they welcome Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and the Clippers into the Footprint Center.
Betting trends to consider in this matchup:
- The Suns are a perfect 9-0 ATS in Division games
- Los Angeles is 1-3 ATS in their last 4 games
- Phoenix is 4-2 ATS in their last 6 games
The Clippers come in with one of the best duos in the league, now that they are both seeing an extended time on the court together. Despite this, the Suns are an excellent team at home and have managed to stifle the Clippers in both games that they played against them earlier in the season in L.A. by a combined 33 points. Give me Booker to put on a show in Phoenix and steal a win from the Clippers to put some room in between one another in the Western standings.
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