NBA playoffs 2021 – Experts’ picks for LA Clippers vs. Phoenix Suns in the conference finals

If you had the Phoenix Suns and the LA Clippers meeting up in the Western Conference finals, you just might be a soothsayer.

The No. 4 seed Clippers made franchise history on Friday night by beating the No. 1 seed Utah Jazz in six games, thus earning their first trip beyond Round 2 in the 50 years of the team’s existence. This, after coming back from a 3-2 deficit to defeat the Dallas Mavericks in seven games. But LA will be without Kawhi Leonard for at least Game 1 as the Clippers’ star forward continues to deal with a sprained right knee and didn’t travel with the team to Phoenix.

Meanwhile, the Suns find themselves well rested and mostly healthy, after defeating the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers in six games and the Denver Nuggets — led by MVP Nikola Jokic — in a sweep. The one drawback for West’s No. 2 seed is that Chris Paul has entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols and is out at least for Game 1 of their upcoming series.

What’s in store with a trip to the NBA Finals on the line? Our experts are unveiling their predictions for Clippers-Suns.

Western Conference finals

Nick DePaula: Suns in 6

Nick Friedell: Clippers in 6

Israel Gutierrez: Suns in 7

Tim MacMahon: Suns in 7

Bobby Marks: Suns in 7

Dave McMenamin: Clippers in 7

Kevin Pelton: Suns in 7

Omar Raja: Suns in 5

Jorge Sedano: Suns in 7

Ramona Shelburne: Clippers in 7

André Snellings: Suns in 6

Royce Young: Suns in 7

Ohm Youngmisuk: Suns in 7

Final tally: Suns 10, Clippers 3.


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