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Clippers to host Pelicans in Friday’s NBA play-in elimination

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Play-in, half two: The Clippers are internet hosting New Orleans with a playoff berth on the road.

The winner within the matchup Friday, at 7 p.m. in Crypto.com Area, will earn the Western Convention’s eighth and closing playoff spot and a first-round sequence towards top-seeded Phoenix. That sequence begins Sunday.

However earlier than both can get to a seven-game sequence starting in Arizona, they’ve one sport to increase their respective seasons. The Clippers are right here as a result of they misplaced Tuesday’s play-in match sport between the West’s seventh- and eight-place groups in Minnesota. The Pelicans beat San Antonio on Wednesday night time within the play-in match’s nine-10 sport, led by C.J. McCollum’s 32 factors and 25 from Brandon Ingram.

New Orleans gained the season sequence 3-1, with the lone loss in the latest sport, a 119-100 Clippers victory on April 3. Although the three earlier video games will affect a few of what the Clippers can be cautious of — limiting Jonas Valanciunas’ three-point taking pictures, Ingram’s scoring and minimizing rookie star defender Herb Jones on that finish — the fourth matchup was most vital as a result of it was the one time these groups performed after their rosters modified significantly following February’s commerce deadline.

For the Clippers, which means containing McCollum, acquired in a commerce with Portland. McCollum made simply seven of his 18 photographs within the early April loss and acquired to the free-throw line 4 occasions. Although he scored 19 factors, the Pelicans had been outscored by 21 factors in his 37 minutes because of Clippers reserves, whose protection within the second quarter broke the sport open. The Clippers additionally held Brandon Ingram to three-of-11 taking pictures whereas Valanciunas — after making 12 of his 17 three-pointers throughout two video games in November – didn’t get off a single three-pointer.

Whereas McCollum performed extra usually off the ball in Portland he’s taken on a lead guard function with New Orleans, his utilization ranking rising from 26% to 29%, and his help share growing from 22% to 31% after the deal.

The Pelicans gained’t have confronted the Clippers with one in all their high scorers within the lineup: Norman Powell. Powell, one other former Path Blazer offloaded, together with Robert Covington, on the commerce deadline was nonetheless but to return from a fracture in a foot bone through the April 3 Clippers victory. That shouldn’t throw a serious wrench into New Orleans’ preparation, nonetheless, as a result of Powell performed New Orleans in November with Portland, and the Path Blazers and Clippers overlap considerably in what they run, and the way, due to relationships between the teaching staffs.