2021 NBA Playoff Bracket: Schedule, Start Time, Odds, Game 2 Predictions For Suns Vs. Clippers
The 2021 Western Conference Finals continues on Tuesday with the Phoenix Suns taking on the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 2.
The Suns struck first in this exciting series, defending their homecourt advantage with a 120-114 victory on Sunday afternoon. Devin Booker was the unsurprising hero for the squad, notching a triple-double by amassing 40 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists in 44 minutes of play. The rising star connected on over half his shots—going 15-of-29 from the field—and knocked down three of his seven attempts from beyond the arc, proving too much for the Clippers defense.
The NBA tweeted a clip of Booker discussing how some all-time greats helped him succeed during Phoenix’s first playoff run since 2010:
Los Angeles struggled to find much offensive output outside of Paul George and Reggie Jackson. The pair combined for a respectable 58 points in the opener, but DeMarcus Cousins was the only other Clippers player able to score in the double digits on Sunday.
The absence of Kawhi Leonard—who hasn’t been seen since injuring his right knee on June 14 and won’t be ready for Game 2—is certainly being felt on both ends of the floor. LA is being forced to go without its best scoring weapon and top perimeter defender against an opponent that ranked fourth in points per game during the regular season and leads the field in scoring during the 2021 NBA Playoffs.
Can the Clippers find a way to turn things around and steal homecourt advantage away from the Suns tonight, or will Phoenix build a 2-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals with a victory in Game 2? You can find some predictions for the outcome of this contest a bit further down in the article.
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Before getting to those picks, take a look at the updated 2021 NBA Playoff bracket and the complete schedule, start time, TV channel, live stream site, odds and more for Game 2 of this Suns-Clippers series.
NBA Playoffs 2021 Bracket Update
No. 2 Phoenix Suns vs. No. 4 Los Angeles Clippers
Western Conference Finals Game 2 Viewing Guide
Date and Start Time: Game 2 of the Suns vs. Clippers will take place on Tuesday, June 22. Tip-off time is scheduled for 9 p.m. ET.
TV: ESPN will air Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals tonight. Mike Breen will be providing play-by-play for the contest, while Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy will be adding color commentary. Cassidy Hubbarth will work as the sideline reporter and Steve Javie will provide insight into the officiating during this Suns-Clippers showdown.
Live Stream: Those preferring to live stream Game 2 can do so via the WatchESPN website or ESPN app, making the Suns-Clippers clash available for streamlining on a multitude of platforms.
Series Standings: The Suns are up 1-0 in the Western Conference Finals after besting the Clippers in the opener.
Here is a look at how the series has played out and some highlights ahead of Game 2’s start time.
Suns-Clippers Series Scores And Schedule
All Times ET
Game 1: Suns 110 – Clippers 104
Game 2: Tuesday, June 22, Clippers at Suns, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
Game 3: Thursday, June 24, Suns at Clippers, 9 p.m., (ESPN)
Game 4: Saturday, June 26, Suns at Clippers, 9 p.m., (ESPN)
Game 5: Monday, June 28, Clippers at Suns, 9 p.m., (ESPN)*
Game 6: Wednesday, June 30, Suns at Clippers, 9 p.m., (ESPN)*
Game 7: Friday, July 2, Clippers at Suns, 9 p.m., (ESPN)*
Western Conference Finals Game 2 Injury Report
Los Angeles Clippers
F Serge Ibaka, OUT (Back)
F Kawhi Leonard, OUT (Knee)
F Abdel Nader, OUT (Knee)
G Chris Paul, OUT (Health And Safety Protocols)
Phoenix was able to secure a Game 1 win without Chris Paul in the lineup, the veteran guard who remains out indefinitely after entering to the league’s Health and Safety protocols. Paul—who averaged an impressive 25.5 points, 10.3 assists and 5 rebounds during his team’s sweep of the Denver Nuggets last round—tested positive for COVID-19 on June 16 and isn’t expected to be available in Game 2.
Paul’s absence gives Los Angeles a better shot at evening things up tonight, but the Clippers have been struggling without one of their own stars. Kawhi Leonard, a two-time NBA Finals MVP, has been sidelined since landing awkwardly in Game 4 of LA’s Western Conference semifinals series against the Utah Jazz. Clippers head coach Ty Lue confirmed Monday that Leonard would not be able to suit up in Game 2 due to this knee sprain.
With Leonard—who averaged 27.3 points, 7.5 boards and 4 assists in four games last round—unavailable, the Clips will continue to lean heavily on Paul George to shoulder the scoring load.
To make matters worse, the Clips will be dealing with another banged up starter in Marcus Morris—one of their top defensive talents—who logged just six minutes in the second half of Game 1 due to a knee injury. While Morris isn’t listed on the injury report and should be able to give it a go, LA’s defensive efforts will take a major blow if Morris is limited by the ailment.
The Suns went up on the board as a 6.5-point favorite, but this line has been steadily moving in Los Angeles’ direction as tip-off time draws nearer. With only a few hours left until Game 2 starts at 9 p.m. ET, Phoenix is now just 4.5-point chalk.
A majority of public is supporting the home side in this matchup, evidenced by the Suns drawing 57% of all bets against the spread, but the bigger bettors and sharps have been hammering the underdog Clippers. LA is now responsible for more than half (52%) of the money bet on this Western Conference Finals line.
The total on Game 2 hasn’t been subject to as much bookmaker tinkering as the spread, but the over-under has been a polarizing line for the public.
Most of the casual bettors will be rooting for a high-scoring affair, with the over garnering 60% of the tickets. This isn’t out of the ordinary for a big, primetime game—which general see casual fans betting on lots of buckets—but only 21% of the handle is on the over side.
Due to this discrepancy in cash, Vegas has lowered the total a full point—from 224 on the open to 223 as of late Tuesday afternoon—and could drop it further before Game 2 gets underway.
Moneyline: Suns -185, Clippers +155
Although the wise guys aren’t siding with Phoenix against the spread, they are drawing heavy interest amongst the sharper moneyline players. Over half the bets (51%) and more than two-thirds (67%) of the cash is on Phoenix to outright win irrespective to the game’s betting line.
The Suns have become a better value in the days since the Game 2 lines first went on the board, moving from a heavy -240 favorite to -185. Those odds mean one would need to risk $1.85 to win $1 on the home team and imply a 65% probability that Phoenix outright wins this evening.
As a +155 underdog, the Clippers would return $1.55 for each $1 wagered if they are able to pull off the upset. Sportsbooks are implying a 39% probability that Los Angeles can win tonight. These implied probability percentages add up to more than 100% due to the vig, which is the cut a shop takes for facilitating bets.
Game 2 Pick: Clippers -4.5
Game 2 Prediction: Suns 112 – Clippers 109
Series Lines and Future Odds
Western Conference Champions: Suns -450, Clippers +350
NBA Finals Outcomes: Bucks over Suns(+145), Suns over Bucks (+195), Bucks over Clippers (+750), Suns over Hawks (+950), Clippers over Bucks (+1100), Hawks over Suns (+1600), Clippers over Hawks (+3700), Hawks over Clippers (+5000)