The Los Angeles Clippers were able to come from behind to capture Game 3 of their Western Conference playoff series against the Utah Jazz, but it came with a price. Blake Griffin suffered an injury to his toe and has been declared out for the rest of the season, so this team will have to figure out some new ways to run their offensive sets as they head into Game 4, which is slated to begin at 9 PM ET at the Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City. BetAnySports customers can get reduced juice on this game before it begins, and then after the opening tip, they can get their fill of real-time wagering as they access the state-of-the-art software that is available through Live Betting Ultra.
The Clippers got 15 points out of Griffin over the first two games, and he is obviously a big part of their pick-and-roll offensive scheme. And his presence was certainly important from the standpoint of exploiting the absence of Rudy Gobert, the Utah center who got injured in the first 20 seconds of Game 1 and has sat out since.
What a difference a couple of days make – now Griffin is out and Gobert might find himself available for Sunday night’s contest. He had suffered a hyperextension of his knee, coupled with a bone bruise, and was just updated from doubtful to questionable. Whether he is anywhere close to 100% upon taking the floor is another matter, but it must be noted that he was the NBA’s leading shot-blocker this season.
In the NBA playoff odds that have been posted on this game by the folks at BetAnySports, Utah is favored at home:
Utah Jazz -3
Los Angeles Clippers +3
Over 197.5 points -110
Under 197.5 points -110
The Jazz fell by a 111-106 score on Friday, and obviously the triple digits on both sides indicates that Utah is not playing at the kind of pace they really want to. Or more specifically, they are not playing the kind of defense they would like. Chris Paul had a lot to say about that in Game 3, as he took things over in the second half, scoring 24 of his 34 points. That was his season high, and he added 10 assists and seven rebounds in what was a classic performance.
DeAndre Jordan had 17 points for the Clippers in the game as well, but BetAnySports patrons may have to recalculate the likelihood of that happening again, if Gobert is able to make post. The one thing you can say about the Clippers, however, is that they have firepower from the outside, if they need it. So they would call upon people like Paul, Jamal Crawford and JJ Redick to assume bigger roles. On the inside, Marreese Speights may have to pick up some of the slack left by Griffin, or Los Angeles could go to a smaller lineup.
Utah led by 13 points at the end of the first quarter on Friday, but in the final stanza, the Clippers went on a 15-0 run to pull ahead. Gordon Heyward had a marvelous game, as he got off to a tremendous start with 21 points in the first period. And he wound up with 40 for the game.
The guy who might be most relieved if Gobert returns is Derrick Favors, who had been overworked after coming back from a knee injury, and kind of showed it on Friday, scoring just two points in 38 minutes. But it Gobert isn’t able to be in the lineup, Utah once again be compromised somewhat on the inside, because Favors does not have a lot of turnaround time to recover.
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