Will Kawhi Leonard Play for the Clippers?
The Boston Celtics travel to Los Angeles to play the Clippers at Staples Center on Wednesday night. It may not be known until game time whether or not the Clippers will have star forward Kawhi Leonard on the floor. Leonard has missed the past three games with a left knee injury. The Clippers are 7-2 when he plays and 2-3 when he sits out.
TV: 10 p.m. ET, ESPN, NBCS Boston, Prime Ticket (Los Angeles); LINE: Clippers -7.5; O/U: 218
As Leonard’s status remains up in the air, Los Angeles coach Doc Rivers isn’t overly concerned and said he isn’t surprised over what is transpiring per Leonard’s health. “We knew at the beginning of the year that this is how it would be,” Rivers said. “I don’t think one coach or one guy has even thought about it, that it would be nice to have everybody out there.”
Boston also could be without a key player as point guard Marcus Smart suffered a sprained right ankle in Monday’s 99-85 road win over the Phoenix Suns. Forward Jayson Tatum led the way with 26 points and a season-best 11 rebounds. The victory occurred one night after Boston’s 10-game winning streak was ended by the Sacramento Kings.
This, That, and a Dart Throw
Boston is 11-2 on the season up to this point. Smart was optimistic that he may be able to play against the Clippers. He will undergo further examination before a decision is reached. “It was minimal swelling for it. I’m able to walk, I’m able to still shift and plant and move side to side, so that’s good,” Smart told reporters. “… We’d rather be safe than sorry and because it’s so early in the season, we don’t want to risk anything. We’ve got a day off, use it to get the treatment I need and be ready for the next game.” Tatum’s double-double was his second of the season. He ranks second on the Celtics with a 20.2 average and leads the squad with a 7.5 rebounding average.
Los Angeles is 9-5 on the season. Forward Paul George has yet to play with Leonard since returning from off-season surgery on both shoulders. He is averaging 29.3 points over his first three games. He scored 33 points against the New Orleans Pelicans in his debut on Thursday. George added 37 two nights later against the Atlanta Hawks. Then he made the decisive 3-pointer with 25.9 seconds left in Monday’s 90-88 win over his former club, the Oklahoma City Thunder. He scored 18 points in the win. “You know, there was a big thing about (how I) can’t make it to win games,” George said afterward of his clutch shot. “That stuff doesn’t bother me. I am out there to play hard and to win games. I feel confident in every shot that I take. It’s up to me to make it or miss it. That type of stuff don’t bother me.”
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The Dart Throw: Clippers 114, Celtics 103
- Trend Under is 4-1 in Clippers last 5 games as a favorite of 5.0-10.5. Hit % 80.00% (5) O/U 1|4 Push 0 W/L
- Over is 39-18-2 in Clippers last 59 games as an underdog of 11.0 or greater. 68.40% (59) 39|18 2
- Under is 39-18-2 in Clippers last 59 games as a favorite of 11.0 or greater. 68.40% (59) 18|39 2
- Under is 5-2 in Clippers last 7 games as an underdog of 0.5-4.5. 71.40% (7) 2|5 0
- Trend Under is 6-2 in Celtics last 8 games as a favorite of 5.0-10.5. Hit % 75.00% (8) O/U 1|4 Push 0 W/L
- Under is 4-1 in Celtics last 5 games as an underdog of 11.0 or greater. 80.00% (5) 39|18 2
- Over is 18-7-1 in Celtics last 26 games as a favorite of 11.0 or greater. 72.00% (26) 18|39 2
- Under is 6-2 in Celtics last 8 games as an underdog of 0.5-4.5. 75.00% (8) 2|5 0
Head to Head Celtics vs Clippers Meeting Trends
- Trend Over is 4-0-1 in the last 5 meetings. Hit % 100.00% (5) O/U 4|0 Push 1 W/L
- Celtics are 1-6 ATS in the last 7 meetings. 14.30% (7) 0 1|6
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