Phoenix Versus Los Angeles Clippers PreviewWestern Conference Second Round
#2 Phoenix (54-28) vs. #6 Los Angeles Clippers (47-35)
Los Angeles can win if…Elton Brand and Chris Kaman dominate the paint, Sam Cassell wears down Steve Nash by having a good offensive series and Corey Maggette averages 20-plus ppg.
Phoenix will win because because…of their tremendous offensive firepower. The Suns are loaded with great shooters and great penetrators and the Clippers will neither be able to slow down Phoenix' offense nor win in a shootout by matching their point production.
Other things to consider: Don't be fooled into believing that the Clippers can simply copy Phil Jackson's game plan of pounding the ball inside and win the series that way. It is true that the Clippers' duo of Brand and Kaman is much better than the Odom-Brown combination that Jackson used, but the Clippers do not have a Kobe Bryant to draw double teams. Phoenix will be able to double team in the post and use their athleticism to scramble around on defense. Cassell is a great clutch player but is not the kind of threat that Bryant is and the Suns can guard him one-on-one without worrying that he might drop 50 points on them.
posted by David Friedman @ 2:02 AM