If you are looking to place a bet on tonight’s Game Four of the Western Conference Finals, look no further than our free NBA picks!
The Los Angeles Clippers got their first win of the series on Thursday but can they level the series tonight? Or will the Phoenix Suns get back to their winning ways and return home with a 3-1 series lead?
Our NBA picks have all of the answers and everything you need to know before placing your bets. Make sure you don’t miss out!
Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Clippers (Game 4) – 9pm EDT
Did the Los Angeles Clippers have the Phoenix Suns right where they wanted them? After falling into yet another 0-2 hole, for the third straight series, the Clippers came out and dominated Game Three, especially in the second half.
With Phoenix leading 48-46 at halftime, the Clippers needed a lift and that is exactly what they got. Reggie Jackson scored 14 of his 23 points in the second half, where LA outscored the Suns by 16 points, 60-44. The Clippers went 9-17 from deep and shot 54% from the field after the main break, compared to Phoenix who only managed 5-14 shooting from behind the arc, while going at just 36% from the field.
Reggie Jackson: 23 PTS
Ivica Zubac: 15 PTS, 16 REB, 2 BLK pic.twitter.com/3XlFn4CTrn
— NBA (@NBA) June 25, 2021
Reggie Jackson, who is on a veterans minimum contract, is playing out of his skin as a second option for the Clippers, being the perfect Robin to LA’s Batman, Paul George. Despite finishing with six turnovers for the game, George had an incredible performance, finishing with game highs of 27 points and 15 rebounds, adding eight assists as well, all while playing 43 minutes.
The big revelation for LA has been the insertion of Ivica Zubac into the starting lineup. After a 14 point, 11 rebound double double in Game Two, the big man had a dominant 15 point, 16 rebound, two block performance on Thursday night, negating Deandre Ayton’s spectacular play while hustling on both ends of the floor to give the Clippers extra possessions, and energy.
There is a bit of confusion around Phoenix’s game plan, especially in the second half. With Chris Paul and Devin Booker struggling from the floor, Ayton had it going offensively early on, having 10 points and six rebounds at halftime. The game plan seemed to shift however and the Suns’ former #1 pick had just eight points and three boards in the second half to finish with 18 and nine for the game.
The pair of Paul, who just returned from COVID-19, and Booker, who wore a mask to protect his broken nose, was just dreadful in this game and the main reason why Phoenix aren’t up 3-0 right now. The duo combined for 10-40 shooting from the field, with 30 combined missed field goals being the most by the pair, finishing with just 30 points between them. Contrast this to the Clippers’ starting backcourt of Jackson and Patrick Beverley, who shot 12-25 from the field for their 31 combined points, with a massive $55.2M difference in annual salaries.
Devin Booker in the Clippers series
Guarded by Patrick Beverley:
— 4-15 FG (26.7%)
— 0-2 3P
Guarded by everyone else:
— 19-41 (46.3%)
— 5-15 3P
Not bad for a guy running around doing nothing. pic.twitter.com/9iD1UUBU3M
— StatMuse (@statmuse) June 25, 2021
However, we fully expect that both Paul and Booker will put up better showings in Game Four, making the proper adjustments and getting better looks throughout. The last two games have seen Ty Lue making adjustments to put his team in the position to win, and now it is Monty Williams’ turn to do the same. He has gotten Phoenix to a stage where they have home court advantage in the Western Conference Finals, with a 2-1 lead, with Kawhi Leonard still sidelined, and needs to take advantage now.
The Clippers effort on Thursday night was inspiring, but they caught the Suns on their worst performance of the entire postseason so far. Phoenix are still favored in this game despite their poor play two nights ago and there is clearly a reason why. LA played great, but can they do it again? We don’t think so.
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.
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Photo By: Corleone Brown