The LA Clippers will face the Detroit Pistons for the second time in four nights on Wednesday. The rematch is set to tip off from Little Caesars Arena at 5 p.m.
While LA ended up winning the first game of the season series 131-124 on Sunday night, they should not try to emulate that performance, at least defensively. The Clippers allowed the no.15 seed in the Eastern Conference to shoot 52.9% from the field and 46.9% from three. Frankly, they were lucky to walk away with the win.
It is unclear whether Kawhi Leonard will suit up for LA. While he’s missed the Clippers’ last two contests (the first for rest and the second with a sore right foot), he did travel with the team on their short East Coast road trip, so it would not be unheard of for him to play on Wednesday against Detroit or on Friday against the Philadelphia 76ers. While the Clippers have proven recently that they don’t necessarily need Leonard to beat the Pistons, he would no-doubt be a big help. Serge Ibaka will remain out with lower back tightness, as he did not travel with the team on the road trip.
There are a few distinctions between Sunday night’s game and Wednesday night’s game that are favorable for Detroit. For starters, Detroit will be in their home arena this time, and they haven’t played since Sunday. Meanwhile, the Clippers are in the midst of a road back-to-back, coming off of a win against the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday night. And for starters, Jerami Grant, who missed Sunday’s game with a knee injury, has not been listed on the Pistons’ injury report. Though the Pistons are not exactly a huge threat regardless of who is in their lineup, they’re definitely more dangerous with their best player (averaging 22.5 points per game) out there. Rookie Killian Hayes also appears to be healthy, but Detroit will be missing Dennis Smith Jr. and Rodney McGruder.
The Pistons have been a respectable 4-5 over their last nine games, and with Grant returning, LA should not walk into the Pistons’ gym expecting a gimme, despite their underwhelming record.
How to Watch
Matchup: LA Clippers (38-18) at Detroit Pistons (16-38)
Date: Wednesday, April 14
Time: 5:00 p.m. PST
Venue: Little Caesars Arena
Broadcast: NBA League Pass
Spread: Clippers -8
Moneyline: Pistons +285, Clippers -355
Point Total: O/U 219.5
Odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook