Mavericks are catching Clippers in playoffs when they're most vulnerable

Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Two
Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Two / Harry How/GettyImages

The Dallas Mavericks took care of business against the Miami Heat on Wednesday night. With Dallas' win over the Heat, the Mavericks have finalized a series against the LA Clippers for the third time in five years.

The previous two times that the Mavericks have faced off against the Clippers in the playoffs, they both ended in a first-round exit. Arguably, this is the most well-rounded Mavericks squad since Dallas last played the Clippers in the 2020-21 season.

While the Mavericks have two remaining games in the regular season, the team's focus has shifted to staying healthy and the eventual playoff series against the Clippers. The duo of Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving have played some of the best basketball of their careers, which has gotten fans excited to see them together in the playoffs.

Mavericks catch Clippers at perfect time due to injuries

With some Mavericks returning from lengthy injuries over the last few games, the team has looked the healthiest it has been in over a month. However, the same could not be said for the Clippers.

During last night's blowout loss to the Phoenix Suns, the Clippers were without all three of their superstars. All of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and James Harden have now missed time with lower body injuries. However, Kawhi Leonard's right knee inflammation could be more concerning than fans realize.

Leonard has now missed six games in a row and has yet to travel with the team during their recent road trip. While right knee inflammation isn't usually a concerning injury, the Clippers have been very vague to the public about when they expect Leonard to return to on-court activities.

Both Leonard and George have a history of missing time around the playoffs, and last year, they both ended the season riding the bench with similar injuries. While it's unclear when Leonard will return to on-court activities, the Mavericks should still gameplan around the Clippers with Leonard in the lineup.

In the case of Harden and George, the Clippers expect both of them to return before the regular season ends in a few days.

Over the last 18 games, the Mavericks have gone 16-2 and are riding some of the best play during the Doncic era. With these two factors in play, the Mavericks have their best shot yet at overthrowing the Clippers since the Doncic era.

The uncertainty around Leonard's injury could end up being a positive for the Mavs if he misses time, and his knees have not been kind to him in the past. If Leonard misses any playoff games, Dallas will have a much better shot at taking down the Clippers.

Their series against LA won't be easy, but Doncic and Irving will be ready for whatever they throw their way.

For more updates on the Dallas Mavericks' playoff series against the LA Clippers, stay plugged in.