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L.A. Clippers Predictions: 2012 NBA Future Lines & Gambling Analysis

Los Angeles Clippers Season Preview – NBA Predictions

Everyone expected the Clippers to improve greatly last season and they didn’t disappoint. When the Chris Paul saga ended with him in LA for the Clippers Lob City was born and they rode that energy all the way to the playoffs before getting swept by the more experience Spurs.

Los Angeles Clippers
Western Conference
2011-12 Record:  40-26
Odds to win title:  30 to 1
Odds to win conference: 15 to 1 from Bovada

Key losses:

Mo Williams – The former point guard become too much of a luxury to keep with Chris Paul in the fold.  He is a nice combo guard but other pieces could make more of an impact.
Nick Young – Wing scorer who didn’t provide much else.  They have able replacements for that roster spot.
Kenyon Martin – Might be missed more than they think because he provided some much needed toughness.

Top Newcomers:

Jamal Crawford – Is always instant offense (except last year) so if that is what they want they will get it.
Lamar Odom – If they are getting the multi-faceted Odom who helped the Lakers excel than this team could really fly.

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If they are getting last year’s version he will do more harm than good.
Grant Hill – Has mastered the art of aging gracefully in the NBA.  Not sure what he is going to contribute but he won’t let the team down either.

Top Players:

Chris Paul – One of the best point guards in the league who proved what a difference maker he can be again last season.
Blake Griffin – An athletic freak with a bit of a mean streak.  He is building out his game and will be a true monster if he can ever shoot it consistently.
DeAndre Jordan – Scoring and rebounding averages have gone up every year in the league.

Still lots of room for improvement though.

In a league where you generally have to inch your way closer to a championship that is probably a good sign.

I like their offseason moves this year too.

I am really curious to see how forward Lamar Odom fits in with this crew.

When he was with the Lakers he showed he can mesh his game with star players but last year was such a debacle who knows.  If he can provide leadership to a second unit that will probably feature more scoring than in the past the Clippers will be able to show more looks to opponents and matchup.

Depth is a key factor for them because their starting lineup after Griffin and Paul is average. [ad-6571516]

Strengths

The Clippers love to get the game going at a fast pace so their best players can do what they do best.  Paul is fantastic leading the break and sometimes it seems like Griffin can dunk from halfcourt – or at the very least you can see a dunk coming from that far away.

Adding Odom might help them get into the break even more as he is a gifted ball handler for his size.

Weaknesses

As the opposite to above the Clippers struggle when the forced to be patient  Whether it is taking their time in the half court offense or being forced to play long possessions on defense they are so itching to create tempo they struggle against methodical team – like San Antonio.

They key to beating them is playing the pace you want to play.

Prediction

The Clippers should improve this year but I am not sure it is enough to close the gap in the Western conference.  Oklahoma City, the Lakers and the Spurs should all be ahead of them so unless they have a dominant regular season to scoop home court advantage it might look at lot like last year – win one round and then out.

If any of those teams falter though than the Clippers could slide right in.  They are in a small group at that second tier.

Situations to watch for…

There was so much hype for the Clippers last year that they were hardly a good bet just 38-36-3 ATS despite the jump in winning percentage. The one situation they excelled in was when they were a home underdog, winning 66% of the time.

There won’t be a ton of situations like that throughout the course of the season but like other teams on the rise they do like to have opportunities to prove themselves every once in awhile.

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About The Wiesguy

The Wiesguy is a newcomer to the handicapping scene. Hailing from Toronto, Canada he is always sweet on the underdogs and you can often find his thoughts, musings and picks at moneydogs.blogspot.com.


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