- We’ve got Kawhi Leonard props tonight on this NBA playoff slate (6/10)
- The Los Angeles Clippers are on the road against the Utah Jazz — tip-off at 10:00 PM EST
- Los Angeles is a 3-point favorite in a game with a 223-point total
I’m back for another exciting playoff slate, and I see an edge on Kawhi Leonard props that has me excited.
The future first-ballot hall-of-famer will lead the Los Angeles Clippers as they look to even their series against the Utah Jazz in a matchup that feels destined to go seven games. The Clippers have been forced to lean on Leonard throughout these playoffs, and he’s played his best when their backs are against the wall. Coming off a Game 1 loss, Kawhi is set up for a big Game 2.
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Kawhi Leonard Props
Clippers Forward Kawhi Leonard Over 27.5 Points (-113 @ DraftKings)
Leonard has cemented himself as one of one of the all time great two-way players in NBA history, and his list of career accolades rival some of the best players of all time. However it’s been Leonard’s postseason performances that encapsulate his greatness. Leonard is one of the elite players that consistently take their game to another level in the playoffs.
Over the Clippers last three postseason runs, Leonard is playing close to 40 minutes per game, while attempting 20 field goals and averaging 30 points. He’s also usually given the toughest defensive assignment which doesn’t show up on box scores. While that’s all clearly impressive, it’s his ability to respond after a loss that really jumps off the page.
Over the last three postseasons, Leonard has played 16 games coming off of a loss. In those 16 games, Leonard has:
- Scored at least 28 points in 12 of 16
- Attempted two more FG than average
- Averaged 32.6 PPG in those 16 games
- Averaged 40.6 PPG after 3 losses in this year’s playoffs
Leonard will have his hands full against a Jazz defense that finished the regular season ranked fourth in Defensive Efficiency. Utah’s defense is anchored by the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, Rudy Gobert. While it would be foolish to try and spin this matchup as an overly favorable one, Utah’s defense has not been as formidable so far in the postseason.
Though it’s a small six game sample size in these playoffs, Utah is surrendering 114 PPG to opponents, allowing them to shoot 46.1% from the field. In the regular season the Jazz allowed only 107 PPG on 44.8% shooting. The Jazz also have a Defensive Rating of 115.3 in the playoffs, compared to 107.5 rating in the regular season.
That’s to be expected to some degree since they don’t get to face the dregs of the Western Conference, however Memphis were an average offensive team during the regular season, but gave the Jazz issues in Round 1.
Kawhi is as trustworthy as a playoff performer gets, especially coming off of a loss. He puts the team on his back tonight and goes for 30+ points and ultimately evens the series.