Basketball-Reference.com gave the Clippers a 53.9% chance of beating the Houston Rockets in Game 7 at Houston’s Toyota Center on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. PDT.
The Clippers had a 3-1 lead over the Rockets in their best-of-seven second-round series before losing Games 5 and 6. In Game 6 on Thursday, the Rockets overcame a 19-point third-quarter deficit by outscoring the Clippers in the fourth quarter, 40-15.
Only eight teams in NBA history have recovered from a 3-1 series deficit to advance to the next round.
The winner of Game 7 will play the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference finals. The Clippers have never made it past the second round of the playoffs in their 45-year history.
This will be the Clippers’ second Game 7 of these playoffs, and their fourth Game 7 in the last three years. The Clippers had Game 7 victories in the first round over Memphis in 2012 (on the road), Golden State in 2014 (at home) and San Antonio earlier this month (at home).
Nearly 80% of home teams win Game 7 in NBA playoff series. But the Clippers have proven to be good on the road this season, winning a franchise-best 26 away games during the regular season, and beating the Rockets twice in Houston during their playoff series.
“We’ve got to come out and play,” Blake Griffin said Thursday. “There’s nothing more to it. Game 7 is Game 7 — it’s about who wants it more. I expect us to be ready.”
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