Trans. Apr 18 3:45 ET (Apr 18 3:45 ET ) There's an All-Star point guard on each side, they're both young and athletic, and each franchise is trying to distance itself from an inglorious past that cast them as afterthoughts for most of their years in the NBA. They've tangled while splitting their four games this season, most famously on Christmas, when Blake Griffin was elbowed by Warriors forward Draymond Green. In March, Griffin and Warriors backup center Jermaine O'Neal squabbled in a Clippers victory and it carried over after the game. ''I don't know if there's a lingering issue or not.'' With both teams having been down so long and now competing for a title, Clippers forward Matt Barnes said there's going to be ''some hostility and animosity and hatred.'' ''It'll be an entertaining series just because how the regular season went,'' Warriors star Stephen Curry said.
LeBron James' jersey remains the most popular in the NBA. The league announced Thursday that the Miami Heat star topped the list of jersey sales in the NBA for the sixth time. With teammate Dwyane Wade - whose jersey number hasn't changed in 11 years - at No. 7, the Heat also had the top spot on the team-merchandise sales list. ''Thanks so much to all that 'Strive for Greatness.''' Kevin Durant of Oklahoma City is No. 2 on the list, followed by the Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant, Chicago's Derrick Rose, Golden State's Stephen Curry and New York's Carmelo Anthony.
David Lee, Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Jermaine O'Neal and Draymond Green all got a rest on Wednesday, but all should be ready to go for the playoffs.
The Scoop:Lee is the most banged up of this bunch with a sore hamstring, while Andrew Bogut isn't likely to play in the postseason with a fractured rib. Expect everyone but Bogut to be ready to face the Clippers in Round 1.
UPDATE: Stephen Curry, David Lee and Andre Iguodala will not suit up tonight, while Draymond Green and Klay Thompson are most likely not going to play as well, according to a report form the San Francisco Chronicle. Programming note: Warriors-Nuggets coverage tips off tonight at 7 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area with Warriors Pregame Live (Territory restrictions apply) Channel locations With a postseason berth assured, locked into the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference playoffs, Warriors coach Mark Jackson concedes the final game of the regular season is his first and last chance to rest those players that need it. "I'm going to talk to my guys and then make a decision," he said after the Warriors secured their seeding by beating the Timberwolves on Monday night. "But I would imagine a good amount of them will not play."
The Scoop:They'll go with a second-string starting unit of Steve Blake, Jordan Crawford, Harrison Barnes, Marreese Speights and Hilton Armstrong. This leaves them with a threadbare bench all available players are likely to play huge minutes in the season finale, while the typical starters get some well-deserved rest.