With approximately 20 games left in the NBA regular season for most teams, the action on the hardwood is heating up, especially in the Western Conference where much of the playoff seeding is separated by only a few games. With 10 games on the slate for Friday night, perhaps none is more intriguing than the all-California affair between the Los Angeles Clippers (33-28, current 4-seed) and the Sacramento Kings (33-25, current 3-seed) at Golden 1 Center (10 p.m. ET tip). The Clips, who are making the 85-mile trip from San Francisco to Sac-town after losing to the Warriors on Thursday, are looking to snap a four-game losing streak.
On a back-to-back, the visiting Clippers have already announced that superstar Kawhi Leonard (knee, load management) will be out for Friday’s game in Sacramento. Forwards Norman Powell and Marcus Morris Sr. are also doubtful to suit up. For the Kings, electric point guard De’Aaron Fox is questionable with a sore wrist, while Richaun Holmes holds the same status.
Playing in California’s capital city, the Kings are 8.5-point favorites at home on DraftKings Sportsbook. Additionally, the combined total has been set at 240 points, which is the second-highest number on the board for Friday’s 10-game slate. However, the real value could be on the Clips to win outright, as they currently show a price of +280 on the moneyline (Kings -340).
Clippers vs. Kings, 10 p.m. ET
Pick ATS: Kings -8.5
I understand there is a chance that PG De’Aaron Fox sits this one out tonight with an ailing wrist, but it is already guaranteed that Kawhi Leonard will not suit up. Given that the Clips just suffered a rather demoralizing defeat on Thursday at the hands of the Warriors, I can’t say I’m thrilled to bet them some 24 hours later without their best player. On the other hand, the Kings have been rolling, winners of their last four (including a 176-175 2OT victory over these same Clippers last week). For transparency’s sake, the Kings are 15-15 ATS when playing in Sacramento.
Over/Under: Under 240
Initially, a combined total of 240 points can be a bit intimidating. Naturally, an inflated number like that is out of respect for the last Clippers-Kings matchup wherein the two sides thrillingly played to a double-overtime finish that resulted in a whopping 351 points. However, a scoring performance like that should go into the outlier category, especially considering the extra periods that are never guaranteed; Give me Under 240.