This article is part of our Handicapping the NBA series.
Suns to win (-110) at LAC – BetMGM (1:20 PM CT)
At this point, I'm going down with the ship. Stubbornly, I'm going to keep betting the Suns since I believe they're the better team. It's essentially a pick'em for this Clippers home game, which isn't surprising given how this series has gone, but I still think that's decent value for Phoenix.
Chris Paul OVER 32.5 Points + Rebounds + Assists at LAC – DraftKings (12:12 PM CT)
I have absolutely no handle on how this series will play out anymore, so let's start with a player prop. This is a pretty favorable line for Paul, who went over this number (barely) in Game 3, as well as in all four games against the Nuggets in Round 2. As he's further removed from the COVID-19 absence, Paul should continue to round into form, and he had his best shooting performance of the series in Game 5. With so much on the line tonight, I think we see Paul take matters into his own hands and exert his will on this game – for better or for worse. The assists will be there, so I'm banking on Paul coming out and aggressively hunting his shots from the first quarter on.
Cameron Johnson OVER 1.5 made three-pointers (+120) at LAC – DraftKings
Johnson finally had somewhat of a breakout in Game 5, hitting three three-pointers (3-3 3Pt) for the first time this postseason. He's shooting the three at a 45 percent clip in the playoffs, but the volume simply hasn't been there on a game-to-game basis. If Monty Williams trusts Johnson to play 20-plus minutes again (he's done so in four of the last five games), I love his chances to hit at least two threes at this favorable number.
Alternate spread: Clippers -2.5 at the end of the First Quarter vs. PHO (+148) – DraftKings
Again, I have no idea what to expect in this series. No result tonight would be surprising. But I love how the shorthanded Clippers are playing, and I think they truly believe they're going to take Game 6. The Clippers' home crowd isn't exactly Penn State in a whiteout, but the building will be on their side, and they should come out with plenty of energy as they continue to essentially play each of these games with house money. My gut says the Suns ultimately win the game, but I like the Clips to get off to a fast start.
OVER on Deandre Ayton 11.5 rebounds (+105) – DraftKings (12:27 PM CT)
Ayton is averaging 13.0 rebounds per contest over these five playoff games versus the Clippers. The further he gets from the basket, the worse the Suns do. He needs to return to dominating the paint for the Suns to end this. I think coach Monty Williams will insist Ayton stay closer to the hoop, even if the Clippers stay with their small-ball lineups.
Paul George to record a triple-double (+1000) vs. PHO – DraftKings (11:41 AM CT)
Although George hasn't gotten a triple-double all year, I think tonight is the night. After a recent 41-point performance in Game 5, it's clear the Suns will need to defend George better, which I think will lead to him giving out more assists. In this series, George is averaging 30.2 points, 10.8 rebounds and 6.2 assists. I know this bet is risky, but if the Suns can slow down George, the star should be forced to dish the ball out more, leading to plenty of assists. Overall, I expect another great performance from George tonight, but I think it'll be because of his all-around playmaking skills rather than his scoring-ability.