How Pelicans vs. Clippers NBA Play-In Odds Changed With Paul George Out

A surprise positive COVID test has forced Paul George out of the biggest game of the Clippers' season. Here's how betting markets reacted.

The Los Angeles Clippers have moved from favorites to underdogs after Paul George was ruled out of Friday night’s play-in game against the Pelicans.

George was placed into the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols on Friday, just mere hours before tip-off.

The Clippers had been -4 favorites across most major American sportsbooks before the announcement. Now, they’re underdogs or pick ’em at those books.

DraftKings and FanDuel have the Clippers as a +1 underdog. Caesars and BetMGM have the Clippers as a -110 pick ’em.

The Clippers had been roughly -185 favorites across the board prior to the news. They’re now -110 at DraftKings, Caesars and BetMGM. The best line currently on the market is with FanDuel at +100.

That means George’s absence moves the Clippers’ implied probability to win tonight’s game from about 65% to 52%. That’s a 13% edge, fitting for a superstar of his caliber.

Los Angeles are 24-27 this season without George, who was injured for parts of December, all of January and February and parts of March.

The Clippers have been 4-2 since his full-time return in late March, including a nail-biting loss to the Timberwolves in a play-in game on Tuesday in which George scored 34 points with seven rebounds and five assists.

The winner of tonight’s contest will represent the Western Conference as its No. 8 seed. That would set up a date with the Suns in the first round.

The Pelicans have gone 3-1 against the Clippers this season, but two of those contests took place when New Orleans had a relatively different roster construction. L.A. had taken the last contest with George in tow and CJ McCollum suiting up for New Orleans.