For the first two weeks of January, the Clippers are playing at home. They won’t have to leave Los Angeles starting from Christmas, when they host the Warriors, and play 9 games at home from there on. That will be a great chance for the team to pile up some wins, and rise up in the rankings. They have small chance to win the division and catch the Warriors, but this was supposed to be the year they are legitimate title contender. The Clippers showed flashes of their potential during a long winning streak in late November – early December, but then lost few games. One thing is certain, their pick and roll offense with CP3 and Blake Griffin is deadly, but the problem are role players, and their lack of true small forward.
Clippers vs Sixers, January 3, Starting price $16, Average price $49
The chance to rack up wins starts with the first game of 2015, when the Clippers host the lowly Sixers. There is no worse team than Philadelphia for the past two seasons. However, the Sixers have scared few teams here and there, and even pushed Memphis to OT once. Michael Carter Williams is playing better and better, and his duel with CP3 is bound to bring entertainment.
Clippers vs Hawks, January 5, Starting price $12, Average price $63
Both teams are playing good, unselfish basketball at the moment. There are few direct matchups worth watching, such as Teague vs Paul, Griffin vs Millsap, and even how will Deandre Jordan handle Al Horford. With both teams pushing the tempo, this one might turn into a highlight reel.
Clippers vs Lakers, January 7, Starting price $60, Average price $163
The Clippers won the first matchup, but it was a close game. Every time the teams meet, history and fate haunts them. CP3 could have been a Lakers player if it wasn’t for Donald Sterling. Now, he has transformed the Clippers into a championship contender, while the Lakers are headed for the lottery. There was a time the Lakers were the talk of the city, but things have changed.
Clippers vs Mavericks, January 10, Starting price $26, Average price $72
The West is so crowded, that games like this might decide whether a team ranks in the top 4 or not. While there is a notion that positioning is not much important in the West, since teams 1-8 are legitimate contenders, having home court advantage helps. Both the Mavs and the Clippers are bound for the playoffs, but their positioning is unknown. .
Clippers vs Heat, January 11, Starting price $30, Average price $147
The last game of the home streak for the Clippers is a second night of a back to back set and the visitors are the Miami Heat. No longer a championship contender, the Heat are a dangerous team nevertheless. Griffin has increased his midrange game, and expanded his range, just like Chris Bosh did few years ago. Now, two players that were bangers in the post shoot mid-range jumpers and 3s. But Griffin still dunks, and Bosh might find himself on the opposite side of a poster.
Clippers vs Cavaliers, January 16, Starting price $118, Average price $133
Kyrie Irving is becoming one of the best point guards in the league, a scary thought for teams other than the Cavs. With LeBron there to guide him, Irving can take his game to a level that few can imagine, maybe even greater than CP3. For the time being, Chris Paul is the best point guard in the league. But the Clippers might have problems in this game, given their lack of small forward. James might have a layup fest if there is no one to check him. Matt Barnes sure is not that player anymore.
Clippers vs Celtics, January 19, Starting price $20, Average price $70
In terms of controlling the tempo, passing and defense, Rajon Rondo and CP3 are very close. They are true floor generals, and point guards in the rightful sense. Which one will manage to prevail and assert his dominance is left to be seen. But Rondo is known to get extra motivation when going against players such as Paul.
Clippers vs Nets, January 22, Starting price $17, Average price $103
Whether this will be a Deron Williams vs CP3 duel is left to be seen. The Nets have placed their entire roster on the trading block. The team is in a mess, and the Clippers would be wise to take full advantage of the situation.
Clippers vs Nuggets, January 26, Starting price $14, Average price $55
The Nuggets are the Doctor Jekyll and Mr Hyde of the season. They go on a winning streak, then on a losing streak in a matter of days. They play inspiring basketball, then the next few games, they look like they are waiting for the summer. Depending on which team shows up, this might be extremely entertaining duel between CP3 and Lawson, and Faried and Griffin. Or, the Clippers might roll over the Nuggets.
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BY: Chris M.