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Clippers vs. Jazz: Game 1 betting odds, preview, and pick

Profile Picture: Andrew Champagne

June 8th, 2021

The Los Angeles Clippers and Utah Jazz kick off their Western Conference semifinal series tonight in Salt Lake City at 10:00 p.m. ET.

While the Clippers fought back from a 3-2 deficit to squeak past the Dallas Mavericks, the Jazz cruised to a fairly-easy, five-game victory over the upset-minded Memphis Grizzlies and have enjoyed a bit of off-time ahead of this best-of-seven showdown. Let’s dive in, shall we?

Wed, June 9 2021, 2:10 AM

UTA Jazz

Moneyline

-180

Spread

-4

Total

O 220.5

LA Clippers

Moneyline

+150

Spread

+4

Total

U 220.5

Can the Clippers Stop Donovan Mitchell?

After the Grizzlies edged the Jazz 112-109, Mitchell responded with four brilliant offensive performances. He paced Utah in scoring in each of their four victories in that series and put up matching 30-point lines in Games 4 and 5. Add in that he also contributed nearly six assists per game in that series, and it’s clear he presents a versatile offensive threat.

The Clippers have had mixed results against Mitchell during the 2020-21 campaign. He had just 15 points in a New Year’s Day contest, but he made L.A. pay in a February back-to-back, when he scored 59 points and tallied 13 assists over two games.

Clippers vs. Jazz By The Numbers

The Jazz are four-point favorites in Tuesday’s contest as of this writing, and are -180 on the money line (the Clippers, by contrast, are +150). The over-under, meanwhile, is set at 220.5, and that last bit of information is what piques my interest the most.

The Jazz surpassed 120 points in all four of their wins over the Grizzlies, and have clearly taken significant steps forward as an offensive team during the latter part of this season. The Clippers, meanwhile, are clearly not slouches on offense, either, and for that reason, 220.5 points seems a bit lower than it should be.

With regard to the point spread and straight-up propositions, I simply cannot trust Los Angeles in this spot. Yes, they fought back from being down 3-2 against Dallas, but that was an ugly series where the squad looked inconsistent and was lifted up by a series of elite performances from Kawhi Leonard. Add in that the Jazz had time to take a few deep breaths after their series, while the Clippers will be playing their fourth game in a week (and at altitude, no less), and there’s a mountain of evidence suggesting Los Angeles is vulnerable.

NBA picks: Over 220.5 points, Utah -4

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