Friday, March 24, 2023
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NBA Preview: New York Knicks (39-29) at Los Angeles Clippers (35-33)

On Saturday afternoon, the New York Knicks will continue their four-game road trip in the Western Conference against the Los Angeles Clippers, with the goal of ending their two-game losing streak.

In a game that went down to the wire, New York lost to the Sacramento Kings 122-117 on Thursday to begin its West Coast road trip. The Kings’ De’Aaron Fox scored 15 points in the fourth quarter, but RJ Barrett scored 25 points and Julius Randle had 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Knicks.

Following Tuesday’s 112-105 defeat to the struggling Charlotte Hornets, which ended a nine-game winning streak, the team suffered the defeat at Sacramento. The Knicks scored 105 points, matching their lowest total in a loss since Jan. 18 and their lowest total since Feb. 7.

With the first of two games in a row at Los Angeles—the first against the Clippers and the second against the Lakers on Sunday night—New York hopes to avoid a three-game skid.

The Clippers want to win for the third time in a row when they arrive.

Los Angeles overcame a five-game losing streak on Sunday by defeating the Memphis Grizzlies by a score of 135 to 129. After that, on Wednesday, the Clippers defeated the Toronto Raptors 108-100 with a renewed defensive effort.

Leonard has missed 28 games so far in 2022-23 due to the residual effects of a previous knee injury and resting to avoid further setbacks; however, the five-time All-NBA selection has been on a tear recently.

He scored at least 21 points in six games in a row on Wednesday, including 34 points in the victory over Memphis and 44 points against Sacramento.

Since January 31, Paul George has been in every Clippers lineup. The six-time All-NBA selection has scored 20 or more points in 11 of his last 13 games, including a double-double with 42 points and 11 rebounds against Memphis.

New York comes into the game with a bit of lineup uncertainty, despite the Clippers’ recent run of healthy play and near full strength. At Sacramento, Jalen Brunson scored 19 points and played less than 20 minutes before aggravating his foot injury.

Tom Thibodeau, the Knicks’ coach, stated that Brunson’s problem appeared to be “soreness.” His status for Saturday is still unknown.

Before beginning the road trip with Sacramento, Brunson, who is averaging a career-high 23.8 points per game and dishing out 6.1 assists, missed the previous two games.

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