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Clippings: The schedule for the first round is out

Playoff basketball has returned to Staples Center.

Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Clippers Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images

On Saturday, for the first time since April 26, 2019, the Clippers will host a playoff game in Staples Center as they open the 2021 postseason against the Dallas Mavericks.

Even with the modified calendar this year thanks to the play-in — which should be here to stay, based on what happened in the Western Conference last night — the NBA has returned to its default schedule of opening the true playoffs with an eight-game weekend bonanza, four on Saturday and four on Sunday with no overlaps.

Here’s how the Clippers fit into it:

  • Saturday, May 22: Game 1, 1:30 p.m. PT, ESPN
  • Tuesday, May 25: Game 2, 7:30 pm PT, NBA TV
  • Friday, May 28: Game 3, 6:30 p.m. PT, ESPN
  • Sunday, May 30: Game 4, 6:30 p.m. PT, TNT
  • Wednesday, June 2: Game 5 (if necessary)
  • Friday, June 4: Game 6 (if necessary)
  • Sunday, June 6: Game 7 (if necessary)

Keep an eye on the early start time Saturday for Game 1, and you know the Clippers will be, considering their history with matinee games, especially against this particular Dallas teams. Assuming the series goes at least five games (spoiler alert, I think it will), the Clippers will have three two-day breaks, giving the team the ability to actually practice. Thankfully, after the regular-season sprint, the league cares enough about the product of its playoff games to bake in some rest time during the postseason.

More news for Thursday:

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