The NBA Western Conference Finals are here and as much as people complain that the Association is too predictable, no one saw this coming. The Phoenix Suns have ridden a fortuitous magical carpet ride of injury luck throughout the playoffs so far. After dispatching the walking infirmary that was the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers, the Suns took down a Jamal Murray-less Nuggets in a clean sweep.
On the other hand, the Clippers have battled their bodily losses to make their first Conference Final in franchise history! It’s a battle of attrition and long-time basement dwellers for the glory of the NBA Finals. Here’s all the odds and information you need on Suns-Clippers.
Suns Open As -225 Favorites
The Suns continue their gilded ride in the NBA Playoffs as yet another superstar player for the opposing team battles injury. Kawhi Leonard sprained his ACL during Game 4 of the Jazz-Clippers series. His likely absence dropped the Clippers to +185 underdogs according to BetMGM.
Details on the severity of the sprain are limited but historically speaking, knee sprains don’t heal themselves very quickly. It’s also worth noting Leonard’s record of being rightfully cautious with potentially career-altering impairments.
Chris Paul COVID Protocol
However, on the Phoenix side, Chris Paul has entered COVID protocol despite receiving the vaccination. Throughout the year, player returns from COVID have run the gambit. Some players come back quickly like nothing was amiss, others take weeks to return to peak form. According to reports, Paul could return more quickly, thanks to the vaccination but for gamblers, this series holds many unknown variables.
Series Odds for Clippers vs Suns
No one looks at this Suns team and thinks it’s a juggernaut but they’ve done well to wipe the floor with ailing opponents. If Leonard doesn’t come back and the Point God Paul can return at some stage, it appears likely they’ll do it again. As gutsy as that Clippers win over the Jazz was, Utah was missing Mike Clonely and featuring a gimpy Donovan Mitchell. The Suns are, despite Paul’s absence, firing on all cylinders and riding a raucous crowd at home.
One wager we like on BetMGM is the Clippers to win Game 1 and the Suns to win the series. That parlay nets you +375. The Suns will have been off for a week when Game 1 tips off Sunday. If the banged-up Clippers are going to steal one, Game 1 looks like their opportunity. Overall, Suns in 5 (+350) or 6 (+400) make the most sense.
If betting the games in this series full of unknowns makes you squeamish, there are still a number of props to consider. Devin Booker has been on a heater all playoffs and with Chris Paul’s availability up in the air, Booker will have to ball. He’s +110 to lead the series in scoring. Obviously, his main competition will be Paul George but look for the Suns to force the ball out of his hands.
Another seemingly no-brainer is Deandre Ayton to lead the series in rebounds. With the Clippers going mostly small ball, it’s hard to see another player topping Ayton on the boards. -250 isn’t great odds but parlaying Ayton with Booker nets you nearly 3-1!