After losing the last two games to the Houston Rockets and Oklahoma City Thunder, the Los Angeles Clippers are now 10th place in the Western Conference. Currently eight teams, including the Los Angeles Clippers, are fighting for the 3rd to 8th spots in the Western Conference. The Clippers are one and a half games behind the current 7th and 8th seeds, the Utah Jazz and San Antonio Spurs.However, their remaining schedule is tough as 11 out of the next 14 games are against playoff teams.
The Clippers are a solid team, but the problem is that ten teams in the Western Conference are solid. The Clippers are the type of team that is good enough to beat any playoff team, but at the same time, they are bad enough that they can lose to any of these teams. Unlike teams such as the Houston Rockets or Golden State Warriors, who have an advantage in every matchup they play, the Clippers are a team that never really have an edge on another team but are still able to compete. Therefore, it is hard to predict the future of the Clippers and their record as they participate in their next games.
Against the Rockets, the Clippers held their own.They encountered a tough loss after leading for a decent amount of the game. The next two games will also be tough for the Clippers as they play the red-hot Portland Trail Blazers, who are third in the Western Conference, and the Minnesota Timberwolves, who are fifth in the Western Conference. These two games are monumental for the Clippers as it will shift the momentum. If the Clippers lose both games, they will be experiencing a four-game lose streak, which can demoralize a team, especially one that is fighting hard for a playoff spot. However, if the Clippers win both games, they will gain more positive energy heading to the end of the season, which can boost their confidence and propel them into a playoff spot.
In general, the Clippers are made up of players with positive and encouraging personalities, so ego or giving up won’t be an issue in these last games. A lot of pressure is now on Doc Rivers, who will have to generate smart game plans every game in order to have a shot at getting in the playoffs. If the Clippers do not make the playoffs, this could be the last of Doc Rivers, who has been under a lot of scrutiny, since the Blake Griffin trade.