LA Clippers: Potential matchups for new-look NBA playoffs

LA Clippers (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)
LA Clippers (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images) /
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LA Clippers LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James LA Clippers Los Angeles Lakers (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

Now things are getting serious.

If the NBA makes the decision to skip directly to the Conference Finals, the Clippers would face-off with their hometown rivals the Los Angeles Lakers immediately, giving the basketball world the playoff matchup they’ve been salivating over since the beginning of the year.

The city of Los Angeles has become the basketball center of the world in recent years, and all eyes would again turn to Hollywood for this potential matchup between LA’s best. No offense to the Eastern Conference and their Milwaukee vs. Toronto would-be matchup, but it just can’t hold a candle to the brightness of this LA vs. LA head-to-head showdown.

The Lakers currently hold the best record in the Western Conference at 49-14, but the Clippers have a 2-1 season advantage in their head-to-head matchups.

The Clippers took down the Lakers 112-102 on opening night, and again bested their rivals 111-106 on Christmas Day. The Lakers got their revenge in their most recent matchup with a 112-103 win on March 8.

It’s often said that in an NBA playoff series, the team with the best player on the floor usually wins. For most of these potential matchups, that player is hands-down Kawhi Leonard. In a series with the Lakers, it could certainly be argued that LeBron James has the slight edge over the Clippers’ leader. It’s a close call, for sure, as both players are among the very best the league has to offer. A matchup with the Lakers also means a matchup with Anthony Davis. The Lakers’ one-two punch of James and Davis is also the first tandem that can really rival the Clippers’ duo of Leonard and Paul George.

Both teams are deep, and among the league’s best in both Offensive Rating and Defensive Rating. This matchup would be a battle of the titans for sure, and having it open a potentially shortened playoffs would mean both teams would be coming in rested and at full strength.

It would certainly make an exciting return to NBA action.