The LA Clippers won Game 5 against the Phoenix Suns on Monday, avoiding elimination for the second time in the 2021 NBA playoffs. It has certainly lifted their spirits as they head to Staples Center for Game 6 in a bid to force Game 7 and eventually overturn a 1-3 deficit.
After Game 4, many believed that the LA Clippers season would now most certainly come to an end, especially with the likes of Kawhi Leonard and Serge Ibaka ruled out. Along with the former Toronto Raptors duo, Ivica Zubac was the latest to be sidelined with an injury just hours before LA took to the court.
Despite all these adversities, the LA Clippers once again showed tremendous grit and determination and managed to live to fight another day.
There are still two games left, but there is a belief within the franchise that they are capable of beating the Phoenix Suns for the next two matches and make their first-ever NBA Finals trip.
On that note, we list five reasons why the LA Clippers do have what it takes to complete the comeback and clinch the series against the Suns.
#5 The LA Clippers resiliency is second to none
The LA Clippers were the first side to make a comeback from being down 0-2 multiple times in a single postseason in NBA playoffs history. They managed to achieve the feat in the toughest circumstances as they continue to show they are a lethal team in the postseason.
Injuries have been a huge problem for almost all the teams in the 2021 NBA playoffs, and the situation with the LA Clippers was no different. Most of the teams, including their city rivals the Los Angeles Lakers, could not deal with injuries to key players, which saw them succumb to an early exit from the 2021 NBA playoffs.
The case was different for the Clippers, though, as even after losing Kawhi Leonard to injury, they still managed to defeat the Utah Jazz and claim the series 4-2.
Even in the series against the Suns, the LA Clippers have never looked like a handicapped side, and all of their games have been close encounters. Not to forget the absence of Serge Ibaka and Ivica Zubac in the recent Game 5 win.
It just goes to show the kind of fighting mentality the team has, which will help them massively in their pursuit of beating the Phoenix Suns in this series.
#4 Various role players stepping up
The LA Clippers' squad depth is one of their biggest strengths. All of their players are capable of putting in highly efficient shifts on any given day. Their ability to play as a team due to this has been enhanced, and has been a huge reason behind them scripting so many comeback wins in the 2021 NBA playoffs.
The box score may not reflect their contributions as such, but the fact that Ty Lue has so many players that he can rely on depending on the in-game situation makes it easy for the LA Clippers to contest games without facing much trouble.
From Terance Mann's 39-point closeout game performance against the Utah Jazz to Patrick Beverley's lockdown defense on Devin Booker, the Clippers manage to find a new star with each passing game.
DeMarcus Cousins and Nicolas Batum have been doing a terrific job lately, and it won't be surprising if these two or the rest of the LA Clippers role players prove to play a pivotal role in the next two games.