Get ready for an NBA Jam-type two-on-two matchup at the STAPLES Center on Saturday, with the LA Clippers hosting the Boston Celtics.
We'll see a pair of the NBA's best duos go head-to-head in Kawhi Leonard and Paul George matching up with Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.
All four players are not only expected to be named All-Stars in their respective conferences, but they're also all receiving consideration for starting spots. And with Brown seeking the first All-Star bid of his career, it adds even more of an incentive to step up on Saturday's bright stage.
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If you caught either of the contests between the Clippers and Celtics last season, you'll understand that this game is must-see-TV.
Remember this from the last time these teams played in Los Angeles?
In 2019-20, both of their meetings went into overtime with the game in Boston even reaching double-overtime. The home team took the victory in each matchup, but not before more than a handful of highlight plays and big shots.
A lot has changed on both rosters since those battles last season but with Leonard, George, Tatum and Brown all elevating their games to a higher level, this has the juice to be one of the best regular-season games of the year.
The efficient rate at which Leonard and George are scoring is historic.
You've likely heard of the term "50-40-90" meaning a player is shooting at least 50 percent from the field, 40 percent from 3-point range and 90 percent from the free-throw line. That feat has only been achieved 12 times in NBA history with eight different players in the 'club'. No two players have ever accomplished it in the same season, never mind on the same team.
While it's only just over a quarter into the season, Leonard and George are both on their way to a 50-40-90 campaign.
Meanwhile, Tatum and Brown are each enjoying career-years, placing themselves in elite company in terms of scoring as a duo.
With Tatum averaging 26.8 points per game and Brown averaging 26.4 points per game - both of which are career-highs for the two young stars - they're one of three tandems in the NBA that are averaging 25 or more points per game.
The Brooklyn Nets' Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving and the Portland Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum are the other two, but neither Irving nor McCollum have played in 75 percent of their teams' games.
Only eight duos in the past 20 years have averaged over 25 points per game for an entire season. If Tatum and Brown can keep this up, they'd join a list that is laden with Hall-of-Fame talent.
|2019-20||Los Angeles Lakers||LeBron James and Anthony Davis|
|2019-20||Houston Rockets||James Harden and Russell Westbrook|
|2018-19||Golden State Warriors||Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry|
|2017-18||Golden State Warriors||Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry|
|2016-17||Golden State Warriors||Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry|
|2016-17||Cleveland Cavaliers||LeBron James and Kyrie Irving|
|2010-11||Miami Heat||LeBron James and Dwyane Wade|
|2007-08||Denver Nuggets||Carmelo Anthony and Allen Iverson|
|2002-03||Los Angeles Lakers||Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal|
|2001-02||Los Angeles Lakers||Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal|
|2000-01||Los Angeles Lakers||Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal|
Not bad company to be a part of.
And if all of that offensive firepower isn't enough to get you excited for this matchup, the best part is, with Leonard, George, Tatum and Brown being four of the best two-way players in the NBA today, we'll all but certainly see them go toe-to-toe on the defensive end of the floor, too.
High-level scoring and tough defence from four of the NBA's most talented players competing on the national TV stage... what more could you ask for?
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