Game Preview: Clippers look for Season sweep of Kings
In more ways than one, the Clippers will aim to make it four in a row on Saturday.
The Clippers (20-21) will host the Sacramento Kings (13-28) on Saturday, with L.A. looking for the four-game season sweep of the Kings and looking to earn its fourth consecutive win overall.
In addition, with a win, the Clippers will reach .500 for the first time since Nov. 7, when they stood at 5-5.
If the season so far has been any indication, L.A. has Sacramento’s number. The Clippers are 3-0 against the Kings in 2017-18, winning by an average of 11.7 points per game.
In those matchups, several Clippers have had their biggest games of the season. On Nov. 25, forward Blake Griffin scored a season-high 33 points in the Clippers’ 97-95 road win over the Kings, including the game winning jumper with 3 seconds left to play. In the Clippers’ 122-95 win over Sacramento on Dec. 26, rookie guard Milos Teodosic dished out a season-high 10 assists and forward Montrezl Harrell scored a then-season-high 22 points off the bench.
And in Thursday’s 121-115 victory against the Kings, Harrell topped his season-high of 22 points by scoring 25 points on 11-of-12 shooting in 27 minutes, including 16 in the second quarter.
“For this team to keep winning games with guys keep going out, it’s just been a blessing for us. Our guys have a great spirit.” – @DocRivers— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) January 12, 2018
Thursday also saw the return of Griffin, who missed two games after suffering a concussion against the Warriors on Jan. 6. He tallied 18 points, 12 rebounds and 6 assists in 33 minutes. Teodosic also returned to the lineup after missing three games with a sore plantar fasciitis. He scored 10 points and handed out 9 assists in 26 minutes.
Currently, L.A. is enjoying its best stretch of the season, having won nine of its last 12 games, tying them for the best record in the NBA over the past 12 games. The Clippers are averaging 115.5 points per game during that stretch.
L.A. will enter Saturday’s contest still battling injuries. Forward Danilo Gallinari (left glute injury) and guard Austin Rivers (right ankle injury) remain sidelined, and rookie guard C.J. Williams will miss his second straight game with a sprained right ankle.
During the second quarter of Thursday’s win over Sacramento, Clippers center DeAndre Jordan went down with a left ankle sprain and did not return to the game. He is listed as questionable for Saturday.
Saturday’s game will tip-off at 12:30 p.m. at STAPLES Center.