You can use all the clichés that have been overused throughout the history of team sports when a team faces elimination but the ones that say it all are “Win and advance,” or “Lose and go home.”
That’s the predicament the Los Angeles Clippers find themselves in as they prepare for game 6 of their Western Conference Semi-Final Series against the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight at Staples Center.
The Clippers are down 3-2 in the best-of-7 series after giving away game 5 in Oklahoma City Tuesday night. To get to a deciding game 7 Sunday back at Chesapeake Energy Arena, the Clippers need the win.
Click on this link to hear from the Clippers getting ready for Game 6.
“I think our team’s really ready.” According to Clippers head coach Doc Rivers. “We’ve watched film. We’ve gotten over it.”
The “It” Rivers referred to was an apparent blown out-of-bounds call by the officials with about 11 seconds left in game 5. Matt Barnes appeared to have fouled OKC’s Reggie Jackson as he went for a lay-up. No foul was called as Barnes appeared to knock the ball out of Jackson’s left hand and into his right and out of bounds.
That’s what all the video replays appeared to have shown. The officials awarded the ball to OKC, in what Rivers – during his postgame press conference - said was a make-up call because no foul was called on Barnes.
“It could be a series-defining play!” Is what Rivers said. “The replays showed it was off Jackson’s hand and it was our ball. Let’s get rid of replay because that was crap.”
That statement and more got Rivers a $25,000 fine levied down from the league.
To hear from coach Rivers regarding the fine, click on the video with this story.
Tip-off for Game 6 is set for about 7:40pm PDT.