Will Kawhi Leonard Play Tonight? LA Clippers vs Chicago Bulls: Injury Updates, Lineup and Game Prediction

Published 01/10/2021, 9:00 AM EST

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The Los Angeles Clippers and Chicago Bulls are meeting each other on the court after both suffered losses in their previous outing. While the Golden State Warriors demolished the Clippers, the Bulls actually had a close call with the Los Angeles Lakers.

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Both teams consist of talented players that have the potential to lead their team into the playoffs. So, will the Clippers take this win to maintain their third spot in the West? Or will the Bulls improve their record to move up in the East?

LA Clippers injury update and lineup prediction

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The problem that seems to haunt the Clippers is their inability to maintain consistency. This was the reason for their downfall last season when they were humiliated by the Denver Nuggets as they tanked their 3-1 lead. Something close to that happened when they played the Warriors and gave up a 20-point lead in the second half, losing 115-105.

Despite having star players like Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, who have been playing great every night, they ended up scoring only two points each in the last quarter. And their 18 turnovers didn’t help their case either. However, Serge Ibaka dropped 19 points and 7 rebounds for LA.

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Talking about the defensive end, Patrick Beverley will play the key role for the Clippers. It is his face-off with Coby White that will decide their fate in this matchup. Also, no injuries will be a plus point for them.

With that, the predicted lineup would be Kawhi Leonard, Serge Ibaka, Patrick Beverley, Paul George, and Nicolas Batum.

USA Today via Reuters

Chicago Bulls injury update and lineup prediction

Let’s talk about where the Bulls are going wrong. This is a team that almost gave the NBA world a big shock after being inches away from beating the reigning champions. But they failed because even though they have young players putting up great performances every night, they have a hard time closing the game against big teams.

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Zach Lavine had finished the game with 38 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists against the Lakers. Although their key piece is PG Coby White who is averaging 18.1 points per game. If his ability to finish skillfully around the rim and terrific speed can surpass Beverley’s top-tier defense, the Bulls can actually have a shot at winning this.

USA Today via Reuters

With only Otto Porter Jr. as doubtful for this matchup, the predicted lineup would be Derrick Williams, Coby White, Lauri Markkanen, Zach Lavine, and Wendell Carter Jr.

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Game prediction

If the Bulls pull off a win against the Clippers, this could say a lot about the franchise that is on the brink of their end. Bulls haven’t made it to the playoffs since 2017, and their fans will be thrilled to see them there this season. The Clippers have had a very rocky season so far, but because of their experienced roster, this close battle will see the Clippers as winners at the end.

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Written by:

Yashima Bhatia

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Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.
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