Game 5 Preview: Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Clippers


Apr 21, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) defends against Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul (3) during the third quarter in game two during the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Clippers

Series Tied 2-2

7:30 PM – TNT- Staples Center

Los Angeles, CA

The Los Angeles Clippers head back home tonight for game five against the Golden State Warriors in what should be a very interesting game. We all know of course, that Clippers owner Donald Sterling has all but destroyed who the Clippers represent at this point. It’s sad that the players have to endure this kind of black cloud over their heads for the duration of the playoffs, but the Golden State Warriors have not backed down from the Clippers, and have no remorse for their opponent on the court. The Warriors are the clear underdogs who are looking for an upset, and the Clippers are looking for an answer for who they play for and represent. Game five should be real interesting to see who wants to advance back to Oakland with a 3 – 2 lead.

In game 4, the Warriors handed the Clippers a 21 point beat down in front of an Oakland crowd who taunted the Clippers and could have gotten into their heads at some point or another. The Clippers are looking to bounce back though. They don’t want to end their season on this kind of note. It’s really a shame that this whole Donald Sterling issue has covered up the Clippers great season, but the team, as well as Coach Doc Rivers have to remember that they also represent the city of Los Angeles as well. The Clippers shouldn’t play one minute for their owner, they should play it for themselves and their fans.

It will also be interesting because fans may decide to protest and not even show up. If that does indeed happen, the Clippers are going to have to step up and play for each other. It’s a tough situation to be in, but the Warriors are looking to take care of business. It could be just another emotional obstacle for the Clippers, who have to come out strong in this game, and not let it get away from them.

Blake Griffin has to stay consistent and provide the energy that the rest of the team feeds off of.  Chris Paul has to be the leader that he constantly depicts himself to be, and has to somehow slow down Stephen Curry from exploding from beyond the arc again. Curry had 33 points that included a playoff career high of 7 three pointers made. DeAndre Jordan has to have a big game, one that includes grabbing countless rebounds, and exhibiting his defensive presence. Finally, the Clippers second unit has to be more consistent and assertive. Jamal Crawford  has been the only staple for the team off the bench. He’s averaging 14.3 points per game in this series. He has to continue his instant offense, especially when the offense slows down, and everyone seems ice-cold.

For the Clippers to win tonight, they have to slow down the “Splash Brothers.” Stephen Curry  and Klay Thompson have had their way with the Clippers in this series, while also accepting the challenge of trying to knock off one of the top teams out west. They also have to try making Andre Iguodala and David Lee the primary scorers. Those guys clearly are not the number one or two options for the Warriors. Finally, the Clippers have to put aside all the scrutiny that they have received, thanks to their owner. If no fans show up to the game tonight, it’s understandable, but the team should play hard no matter what the circumstances are. The Clippers can rise above from this controversy and deal with it in the off-season. They should take their own stand by going out and trying to win, not just for themselves, but for the city of Los Angeles and Clipper Nation. Yes, Los Angeles is a Lakers town, but the Clippers are on a mission to prove that it’s theirs as well. Going back to Oakland with a 3 – 2 cushion should be the mentality for tonight’s game.

Prediction: The Clippers edge out the Warriors in a close game filled with a lot of intensity and emotion. 101 – 99