The Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Utah Jazz by a score of 99-91 to take Game Two of their first round postseason series. The Big Three of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan were the key factors in this game. Paul picked up a double-double by scoring 21 points and dishing out 10 assists. Griffin scored 24 points, but played poorly on the glass, as he only grabbed five boards. Jordan picked up Griffin’s poor rebounding play, by snagging 15 rebounds and scoring 18 points on 81.8% shooting.
This was a must-win game for the Clippers. If they went down 0-2 they would be all but finished in this series. Very rarely does a team come back from down 0-2, and the Clippers do not have the playoff resume that would lead people to believe that they could pull it off. Luckily, we do not need to have this conversation, as they have further postponed the potential breakup of the Big Three.
It would behoove the Clippers to go all out for Game Three. Obviously, every game in the playoffs is big, so building up positive momentum is key in each and every series. If the Clippers can snag Game Three, they will be in good shape. Winning two games in a row become three and then four and then that’s the series. Winning four in a row is easier said than done, especially against a solid team like the Jazz, but once a team gets hot, there is little that can slow them down.
The Clippers also need to take advantage of the fact that Rudy Gobert is out. If he comes back, the entire series could shift in favor of the Jazz. Gobert is as good a center as there is in the NBA. He may not put up a lot of points each game, but he grabs boards and plays top-notch defense. It is key for the Clippers to take as much advantage of his absence as possible, so taking Game Three becomes even more important.