Game Preview: Clippers Look to Extend Winning Streak to 3 vs. Magic
One team will be looking to continues its streaks, while the other will be looking to end them.
The LA Clippers will take on the Orlando Magic on Wednesday, in the first game of a four-game road trip. The Clippers have won two straight games, defeating Washington on Saturday and Toronto on Monday, and has won seven straight over the Magic.
Conversely, Orlando comes into Wednesday’s game looking to end a two-game skid, and in the process, put an end to the Clippers’ recent dominance of the head-to-head matchup.
The Clippers’ win over Toronto on Monday is arguably their best of the season. The Raptors came in as winners of six straight and were averaging 118 points per game over the last five games. But LA held Toronto to 91 points on 40 percent shooting, and also held the backcourt tandem of Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan to a combined 31 points on 9-for-26 from the field.
Center DeAndre Jordan scored 14 points and grabbed 17 rebounds to notch his 13th double-double of the season and his fourth in the month of December. Guard Milos Teodosic also returned to the Clippers’ lineup against Toronto, and scored 12 points to go along with seven rebounds.
“Teams have so much talent, but even with all our guys out, you can’t account for a team that’s going to play hard, and I thought that’s what we did all game,” said Clippers coach Doc Rivers after Monday’s game.
Both the Clippers and Magic will take the court on Wednesday without injured stars. Clippers forward Blake Griffin has missed the last six games with a sprained MCL in his left knee, suffered Nov. 27 in a Clippers’ win over the Lakers. The prognosis from the following day was that Griffin will miss up to eight weeks. On the season, Griffin is averaging 23.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.1 assists.
In addition, forward Danilo Gallinari will miss Wednesday’s game, having suffered a second glute injury in Saturday’s win over the Wizards. Gallinari had missed 13 games with a left glute strain earlier in the season, but returned to the Clippers’ lineup against Minnesota on Dec. 6.
Against the Wizards, Gallinari scored a season-high 25 points. He is averaging 13.4 points and 4.4 rebounds on the season.
On the other side, Orlando could be missing its top two scorers, forward Aaron Gordon and guard Evan Fournier. Gordon could miss his second straight game with a concussion, after colliding with Nuggets’ guard Gary Harris in Denver’s win over Orlando on Friday. He is averaging 18.5 points and 8.1 rebounds on the season. And Fournier is expected to miss his third straight game, after suffering a sprained ankle against Atlanta last Wednesday.
Fournier’s backup, guard Arron Afflalo, could also be out with back spasms. Rookie forward Jonathan Issac will also miss Wednesday’s game with a sprained right ankle.
Friday, 12/15: Clippers at Washington, 7 p.m. ET