2017 NBA Playoffs
2017 NBA Playoffs

Numbers preview: LA Clippers vs. Utah Jazz

John Schuhmann

John Schuhmann NBA.com


Apr 14, 2017 6:58 AM ET


Is this the last run for the LA Clippers core?

Four of the Clippers' five starters will likely be free agents this summer. Since Chris Paul arrived in L.A., only two teams have won more regular season games than the Clippers. But Paul's five trips to the postseason with Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan have all ended before the conference finals.

There were brutal late-game mistakes against Oklahoma City in 2014, an epic collapse against Houston in 2015, and injuries against Portland last year. So you can excuse the Clippers if they want another shot at making a run.

But if they can't get any further this year, you can understand if Doc Rivers decides to make major changes. And he may not have a choice, really.

Just getting out of the first round is no guarantee for the Clippers, even though they're relatively healthy and finished the regular season by 11 of their last 13 games. To even have a shot at the Golden State Warriors, the Clips will need to get through the Utah Jazz, a new team to the playoffs, but one that has fought through a myriad of injuries to match the Clippers' 51-31 record.

For one team, it may be the start of something. For the other, it may be the end. And it's the only first round series between a top-five offense and a top-five defense.

Here are some statistical notes to get you ready for the 4-5 series in the West, with links to let you dive in and explore more.

Pace = Possessions per 48 minutes
OffRtg = Points scored per 100 possessions
DefRtg = Points allowed per 100 possessions
NetRtg = Point differential per 100 possessions

LA Clippers (51-31)

Pace: 98.2 (17)
OffRtg: 110.3 (4)
DefRtg: 105.8 (13)
NetRtg: +4.5 (6)

Regular season:Team stats | Advanced splits | Player stats | Player shooting | Lineups
vs. LA Clippers:Team stats | Advanced splits | Player stats | Player shooting | Lineups

Clippers notes:

  • Scored 109.1 points per 100 possessions in 33 games (and were 21-12) against the league's top 10 defenses, the league's second best mark against that group. Only Golden State 111.1 was better.
  • Were the league's best second quarter team (plus-13.1 NetRtg) and were 7.1 points per 100 possessions better in the first halves of games (plus-8.0) than in the second halves of games (plus-0.9). Only Minnesota (10.8) had a bigger NetRtg drop-off from the first half to the second half.
  • Despite injuries to Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, the Clippers' starters were the third most used lineup in the league (871 minutes) and outscored their opponents by 15.8 points per 100 possessions with their starters on the floor together. Among lineups that played at least 300 minutes this season, only the Warriors' starters were better.

Utah Jazz (51-31)

Pace: 93.6 (30)
OffRtg: 107.4 (12)
DefRtg: 102.7 (3)
NetRtg: +4.7 (5)

Regular season:Team stats | Advanced splits | Player stats | Player shooting | Lineups
vs. LA Clippers:Team stats | Advanced splits | Player stats | Player shooting | Lineups

Jazz notes:

The matchup

Season series:Clippers won 3-1 (2-0 in L.A.)
Oct. 30 @ LAC - Clippers 88, Jazz 75
Feb. 13 @ UTA - Clippers 88, Jazz 72
Mar. 13 @ UTA - Jazz 114, Clippers 108
Mar. 25 @ LAC - Clippers 108, Jazz 95

Pace: 92.3
LAC OffRtg: 105.9 (11th vs. UTA)
UTA OffRtg: 96.7 (26th vs. LAC)

Matchup notes:

John Schuhmann is a staff writer for NBA.com. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.

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