Play It Forward April 10-16: Unless they’re big Jazz fans, the Clippers face the music in the NBA playoffs again

Ranking the top 10 sports events April 10-16 you won’t want to miss:

Clippers center DeAndre Jordan celebrates after dunking the ball while the Jazz’ Gordon Hayward looks back at him during their game at Staples Center on March 25. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

The NBA Finals start June 1. The conference finals begin May 16, and the semifinals launch on May 1. It may be jumping the gun for the Clippers to have any of those dates jotted down on their calendars based on some recent post-season history. But once the regular season ends for them at home against Houston (Monday, 7:30 p.m., TNT) and then Sacramento (Wednesday, 7:30 p.m., Prime Ticket) – a win in either one gives Doc Rivers the most regular-season coaching victories in franchise history – we’ll see again whether the pieces fit together to get by the first round match up against the Utah Jazz, scheduled to start either Saturday or Sunday, in Utah or at Staples Center.
The Clippers and Jazz go into their last two games wedged in at fourth in the Western Conference, jockeying for home-court advantage, as the Clippers hold a tie-breaker by winning three of four meetings this season, including a 108-95 decision at home on March 25. In that one, Jamal Crawford and Chris Paul were hit with technical fouls – what a surprise – as the Clippers were about to surrender a 16-point lead in the third quarter. Crawford sobered up and scored 17 of his 28 points in the final quarter to push the Clippers. Utah finishes up the regular season at Golden State on Monday and vs. San Antonio on Wednesday.
More about the Dodgers’ trip to Chicago, their Jackie Robinson Day festivities at home, the Ducks’ NHL playoffs opener and more at this link.

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