3 teams the LA Clippers should avoid in the first round of the playoffs

Paul George, LA Clippers - Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Paul George, LA Clippers - Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports /
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Paul George, LA Clippers
Paul George, LA Clippers – Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

1. Phoenix Suns

The most probable matchup for the LA Clippers in the first round is the Phoenix Suns. After acquiring Kevin Durant, Phoenix instantly jumped as the championship favorite in the Western Conference. Despite the minimal sample size, they have proven that their big three can compete with any team in the league.

However, similar to the Clippers, Phoenix’s biggest obstacle is remaining healthy. Durant, along with hall-of-fame point guard Chris Paul, has a track record of facing injuries during the postseason. This could be detrimental towards their scheme as they would be relying on their role plays to take a significant step forward.

Additionally, even with a healthy roster, Phoenix does not have the depth to hold up with the Clippers. Outside of their trio, DeAndre Ayton is one of the only players who can pose a severe threat to LA. This is where the Clippers can find their advantages, especially on the defensive end.

More specifically, Paul’s age and mobility will be seen as a liability against Russell Westbrook, primarily in transition. In fact, there is no true point guard on the Suns’ roster who will be able to stay in front of the Clippers’ foundational pieces.

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That said, the LA Clippers have several advantages against the Suns. On the other hand, if Phoenix is firing on all cylinders, head coach Tyronn Lue and his squad must draw up the perfect game plan to keep up. The last thing Clipper fans hope to see is a first-round exit in the year they were expected to make the finals, let alone win it all.