Warriors vs. Clippers Preview: Can Shorthanded L.A. Keep It Close?

Action Network senior NBA writer Matt Moore previews Monday night's matchup between the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Clippers.

Warriors vs. Clippers Odds

Warriors Odds -6
Clippers Odds +6
Over/Under 222.5
Time 10:30 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

The Golden State Warriors take on the Los Angeles Clippers in an interesting, short-handed spot. It’s NBA All-Star week, which means players’ minds tend to wander towards vacation plans and a much-needed break. Be careful out there on the betting sheets.

Let’s take a look at the ways we should be betting this Monday night divisional matchup.

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Warriors Stabilizing on Defense

The Warriors got by the Lakers on Saturday, but it wasn’t particularly impressive. On the injury front, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala remain sidelined for this one.

The Warriors haven’t fallen apart without Green — they’ve won 10 of their past 12 without him — but they’re eighth in offense and 16th in defense over the last two weeks, per Cleaning the Glass. They’re beatable.

The Warriors are 2-0 straight up and 1-1 ATS vs. the Clippers this season. Without Paul George playing for L.A., there’s a clear talent advantage for the Warriors, but Green’s absence does impact things.

The Warriors are ninth league-wide vs. switch, which is the strongest club in the Clippers’ defensive bag. But Green’s absence matters in finding opportunities to exploit mismatches.

Golden State has the 15th-ranked offense vs. top-10 defenses. The Clippers are 11th but have been hanging in the top 10 most of the season. On the other side, the Clippers’ phalanx of long-armed defenders, even they are shorthanded, matches up well vs. Stephen Curry and Jordan Poole.

The Warriors’ offense is pedestrian, but their defense remains stout enough that the Clippers will struggle to score as they have against other good defenses this season.

Hobbled Clippers Are Still Competitive

Norman Powell — who the Clippers traded for last week — suffered a fractured foot over the weekend and is out indefinitely. Luke Kennard is questionable for this game with ankle soreness.

The Clippers are shorthanded, but have been making do all season despite missing key contributors. They should be able to slow down the Warriors’ offense, and the Warriors’ defense isn’t as versatile without Green. The Warriors are 13th in defense when switching since Green went out. However, the Clippers for the season are 27th against switching defenses.

The best way to categorize this with the various injuries is that the Clippers are well-built to hang with Golden State, but not well-built to win outright.

Warriors-Clippers Pick

The Clippers struggle to score, the Warriors struggle to score, both run a scheme that’s hard to score against, even if Golden State has had success with it this season.

This projects as a slugfest. I have this modeled at Warriors -4.3 on full-season numbers, but with Green out that moves much closer to Warriors -1.5 (I would stay away from Clippers moneyline).

At 222.5, I think there’s a significant edge on the under. Both of these offenses struggle, especially with the matchup.

Pick: Under 222.5 | Clippers +6