Shaq and Charles Barkley Remain Confident Clippers Will Reach Western Conference Finals Despite All This
The Golden State Warriors beat the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night, 115-91. It was the Warriors' fourth straight win and the Clippers' fourth straight loss as they dropped to the 7th seed with a 33-32 season record. Stephen Curry did not play for Golden State while Paul George and Kawhi Leonard both started for Los Angeles. After watching the highlights of this nationally televised ass-kicking, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal came to the same conclusion - the Clippers are definitely going to the Western Conference Finals.
Shaq: "Clippers still going to be in the Western Conference Finals."
Barkley: "Yes they are. I'm all-in on the Clippers."
When I heard this last night I thought I had hallucinated it. Predicting this at this point in time can only be considered contrarian. Yes, the Western Conference is very tight with eight teams between 30 and 34 wins right now, but you might as well pick a team name out of a hat and pretend you're just as confident.
If the playoffs started today the Clippers would have to make it out of the play-in tournament before they could even think about winning two straight series. Forget about keeping George and Leonard healthy for long enough to do that, what if the play-in tournament falls on one of Kawhi's rest days?
Then there's the fact that the Clippers are the only team in the NBA currently starting Russell Westbrook and playing him 30 minutes a game. Westbrook made just 3-of-12 shots last night despite the fact that, uh, no one was guarding him.
The Lakers weren't contenders when they were doing that and I don't see why the Clippers should be considered that now. Unless you can't stop just saying stuff.