CM – Jazz makes the exception of the Clippers path to the playoffs


SALT LAKE CITY – Remember how the Clippers returned to # 4 in the playoffs, losing to Houston and Oklahoma City, the bottom-end teams in the Western Conference, at the end of the season?
He was giving the public a glimpse of the jazz bulletin board Tuesday morning when he told reporters, « Of course we are a matchup that the Clippers found a beneficial matchup for them. »

At the time, Clippers coach Tyronn Lue said the point was to make sure everyone stays healthy and progresses to the playoffs.

« My biggest thing with the luck that we had the whole season, we’re just trying to get our eight or nine boys out and just make sure we’re healthy, » said Lue on the 16th, when starting center Ivica Zubac played only a few Seconds – while he used the rarely used rookie Daniel Oturu for 37 minutes in a 117-112 defeat in Oklahoma City.

« I can take a bit of rust every day, » Lue said, adding that he thought the six days between the regular season finale and the first game of their first-round series against Dallas would detract from his players’ rhythm .

« We talked about it as an employee and as an organization. The best thing for us is that we are all as good as healthy now, we want our boys to go into the playoffs as healthy as possible. »

And for the most part, the Clippers have been in good health. (Exception: Serge Ibaka, who played two games against Dallas before back cramps sidelined him.)

Despite Lue’s stated intentions, the most popular working theory among the public was that the Clippers tried to dodge the Lakers in the first two rounds. In any case, those last two regular season losses didn’t send a message that the Clippers were particularly keen to avoid, neither Dallas, which pushed the Clippers to seven games, nor the top-seeded Jazz, which they were in three this season Playing twice defeated.

« I mean, if they did that, if they lost games to try to play against us, then they chose that fate, » said jazz guard Jordan Clarkson, a former Laker who worked with a golden number 8 Kobe Bryant jersey.

« We’re going to get out there and lace them up and win a series – one to four first. If that’s what they were trying to manipulate because they thought it was what it is, then, as I said, we’ll stick with what we’re doing and put our strengths on it.  »

When asked about Snyder’s comments and whether he was bothered by the Utah coach’s allegation that the Clippers had sated the last two games, Lue replied flatly: “I am not offended by anything. I heard everything.

« We had to get past the first lap to get there, » added Lue. « If he wants to use that as bulletin board material to stand up for the show, that’s their deal. »

The Jazz planned to welcome 18,000 fans to the Vivint Arena for Game 1, most since the coronavirus forced the league to pause – and gradually reopen this season – in March 2020.

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« It’s always a love when we have more people in the stands in this arena, » said Clarkson, noting how effective 13,000 fans were during Jazz’s first round against the Grizzlies. « The first two games were super loud and to end the series here against Memphis, the last game, it was an experience that many young people will never forget and that I will never forget. »

The Clippers also opened the doors of the Staples Center a little wider in the playoffs, with up to 7,428 viewers for their four home games against Dallas. That number will go up as this streak goes to Game 6, where the arena is allowed to open to full capacity.

In an email to fans, the team announced that new health and safety guidelines will come into effect on June 15th that will allow the team to remove vaccinated sections and socially distant seating.

To play games at full capacity in accordance with health and safety guidelines, fans must provide either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the event.

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