LA Clippers will look for answers against Golden State Warriors

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 30: Patrick Beverley
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 30: Patrick Beverley /

The LA Clippers have hit a skid at the wrong time, going 2-3 in their last five and falling in the Western Conference. A matchup with Golden State will be a test.

Just a week ago, the LA Clippers had their sights set on home-court advantage and a possible matchup with teams such as the Utah Jazz and the Portland Trail Blazers.

Now, the Clippers have lost three of their last five and see themselves sitting in the sixth spot in the Western Conference — not to mention the fact that they’re in a tiebreaker war with the San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Clippers currently sit a half game ahead of OKC and one game ahead of the Spurs. They’re also two and a half games behind the Jazz, so the likelihood of a five seed is out the window for the Clippers.

As for the game against the Warriors, LA has a chance to split the season series with Golden State, winning the first game and losing the last two.

Patrick Beverley and Danilo Gallinari are both dealing with injuries and could miss the game. Beverley has been a staple of the hard-working identity the Clippers have developed and his absence has seen the Clippers take a considerable dip in the wrong direction.

Meanwhile, Gallinari has been on a tear scoring the basketball. He’s averaging nearly 20 points per game this season and shooting over 40 percent from three-point range, so his absence would be a big one.

As for the Warriors, they enter this matchup as winners of four straight and playing some of their best basketball of the season, which doesn’t bode well for the Clippers.

With it being the last regular-season game in Oracle Arena, the Clippers will have to score with Golden State. The atmosphere will be playoff-like, which will help younger players, but a win is necessary in this matchup to ensure good seeding in the Western Conference.

How can the Clippers win? Slow the game down and play how they know how. Play through Lou Williams, dominate the pace of the game and dictate the action. If the Warriors begin to hit shots, the Clippers will have to shoot with them.

There is no doubt that this could be the biggest game in recent history for the Clippers. With the playoffs looming, a first round exit to Golden State or Denver is not something the Clippers or their fans want.

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The LA Clippers will meet the Golden State Warriors tonight at 5:30 PM PT/8:30 PM EST. The Warriors are listed as 11-point favorites.