Washington Wizards at LA Clippers
Sunday, December 1, 2019 at 10:30 PM (Staples Center)
Clippers -11.5; Total 238 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The LA Clippers (14-6) return to Staples Center where they are 11-1 this season in hopes of rebounding from a loss Friday night in a Sunday evening game against the Washington Wizards (6-11), a team that is just 3-7 on the road this year. The game features two of the top offenses in the NBA, with Washington entering the game ranked No. 2 in the league scoring 118.5 points per game and the Clippers checking in at eighth scoring 113.7 points per game.
The Clippers had been playing great basketball, winning seven in a row heading into Friday night’s game at San Antonio, but the Clippers’ big three scorers of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and Lou Williams all went ice cold with Leonard hitting 8-of-23 shots from the field for 19 points, George connecting on just 2-of-11 shots for five points, and Williams making only two of his 10 shots for seven points. It was the likes of Jamychal Green with 16 points, Montrezl Harrell with 12 points, and Patrick Beverley with 10 points joining Leonard to lead LA in scoring.
That game was played in stark contrast with the Clippers’ previous seven-game win streak that featured wins over Oklahoma City, Boston, Houston, New Orleans, and Dallas, as well as a 150-101 demolishing of Atlanta. However, the Clippers have won seven in a row at home with the lone home loss on the season coming in a 129-124 defeat against Milwaukee. The Clippers do maintain a top-10 defense in the NBA, allowing 107.5 points per game, but that improves to sixth in the league in home games allowing just 102.3 points per game at Staples Center.
Leonard leads the Clippers and is 11th in the NBA in scoring with 25.4 points per game, and he adds 7.9 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game. George scores 22.6 points with 6.1 rebounds per game, and Williams comes off the bench to score 21.7 points with 6.2 assists per game. Harrell joins Williams off the bench to add 18.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. With Leonard, George, and Harrell leading the way dominating the boards, the Clippers rank third in the NBA in rebounds.
Things haven’t been as successful for the Wizards. Washington has lost three of its last four and will complete a four-game road trip in Los Angeles on Sunday night. Of the Wizards’ seven road losses this season, only three have been by double digits, but the two losses on the current road trip were by 13 points to Denver and 22 points to the Lakers.
The key to keeping Washington close in many of these games has been the elite scoring from Bradley Beal with a solid complement of offensive players. Beal ranks fourth in the NBA averaging 28.3 points per game and he adds 7.1 assists per game as well. Thomas Bryant leads the rest of the team with 14.2 points with 8.2 rebounds per game, Davis Bertrans scores 12.8 points per game, Rui Hachimura adds 12.4 points per game, while Moritz Wagner scores 12.0 points per game and Isaiah Thomas scores 11.9 points per game.
Beal was his team’s leading scorer in the Wizards’ most recent game against the Lakers, but he was held to his third-lowest scoring game this season with 18 points but he did add nine assists. Hachimura added 16 points with eight rebounds, Ish Smith and Jordan McRae scored 13 points apiece, and Thomas scored 10 points in the loss.
The difference in this game is going to come down to rebounding. While the Clippers rank third in the NBA in rebounds, they are the best rebounding team in the NBA in home games, pulling in 60.7 rebounds per game at home. In contrast, Washington ranks 28th out of 30 NBA teams in rebounding, but on the road, the Wizards are the worst rebounding team in the NBA with just 47.5 rebounds per game. That’s a lot of extra chances for Leonard, George, Williams, and Harrell.
Despite its poor record this season, Washington is an impressive 10-6-1 against the spread this season and it is 6-3-1 against the spread on the road. The Clippers are also an impressive 8-4 against the spread as a home team. While both teams against great against the spread in this situation, superior rebounding and a team that simply can’t remain cold from the field will be the difference. The Clippers will win big in this one as Beverley will try to shut down Beal. Take the Clippers.