The LA Clippers, who were without All-Star Kawhi Leonard, saw their four-game winning streak ended by the New Orleans Pelicans. Paul George had a poor shooting night, getting only one of his 6 3-point attempts on target, Terence Mann top-scoring for the LA Clippers with 17 points.
Meanwhile, the Phoenix Suns have all their key players available against the LA Clippers as they seek a return to winning ways following a loss to the New York Knicks in their last outing. Devin Booker continued his prolific form, scoring 33 points, while Cameron Johnson and Cameron Payne produced 11 points apiece off the bench.
LA Clippers vs Phoenix Suns Prediction
The LA Clippers have multiple injury concerns. Kawhi Leonard expected to return after at least a week. Jay Scrubb is ruled out for the season, while Paul George and Nicolas Batum are doubtful starters for this match. Serge Ibaka and Patrick Beverley are also ruled out for this game.
The LA Clippers had a poor outing in their last match, with Paul George producing his worst shooting night in recent weeks. DeMarcus Cousins and Amir Coffey will be expected to continue their decent form off the bench, although the lack of multiple players could be an issue.
Meanwhile, the Phoenix Suns suffered losses against the Boston Celtics and the Brooklyn Nets but were at their fluent best against the surging New York Knicks. Chris Paul produced 20 points, six assists and five rebounds, while Mikal Bridges had an exemplary shooting night as well.
Considering the Phoenix Suns' recent form and the plethora of missing players in the LA Lakers roster, the Suns are favorites to win this matchup. On that note, let's take a look at a hypothetical combined starting five of the LA Clippers and the Phoenix Suns.
LA Clippers vs Phoenix Suns combined starting 5
Point Guard- Chris Paul | Shooting Guard – Paul George | Small Forward – Devin Booker | Power Forward – Mikal Bridges| Center – DeAndre Ayton.
The Phoenix Suns have arguably the best guard-pairing in the league at the moment.
Chris Paul has been a breath of fresh air and has been a big influence on the young stars in the Phoenix Suns roster. Even at 35, the shooting guard is averaging a double-double and is producing more than a steal per game.
Despite Devin Booker’s brilliance, Paul George has produced some of his best basketball of the season in recent weeks. He has led his team to multiple victories despite the multiple injuries the LA Clippers are grappling with. Barring his last outing, George is averaging more than 30 points in his previous four appearances.
Devin Booker missed out on an All-Star appearance, despite being deserving of one.
He has been prolific all season and caught fire against the Brooklyn Nets, getting four of his five 3-pointers and eight of his nine 2-point attempts on target. Devin Booker is versatile enough to operate in the small forward position, while his teammate Mikal Bridges has been impressive as well.
Now in his third season with the Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker is shooting at just over 40% from the 3-point zone, with an overall efficiency of almost 63% this season. He is also averaging a steal and o.8 blocks per game and has been a key role player for the Phoenix Suns this campaign.
Finally, DeAndre Ayton takes up the center position, as Serge Ibaka is missing for the LA Clippers.
DeAndre Ayton is the only Phoenix Suns player to average a double-double this season and has registered 15 points and 10.7 rebounds per outing this season. He is also the most efficient scorer that the Phoenix Suns have in their roster at the moment.