J.J. Redick hopeful Thursday’s last-second victory can propel Clippers down the stretch

Trail Blazers Clippers Basketball

Chris Paul whoops it up with J.J. Redick after Redick made a buzzer-beater that helped the Clippers defeat the Portland Trail Blazers 96-94 on Thursday at Staples Center/AP photo by Alex Gallardo


J.J. Redick was one of the heroes for the L.A. Clippers on Thursday when he hit a 21-foot shot at the buzzer to lift the Clippers to a 96-94 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers at Staples Center. Chris Paul was the other. With 1.1 seconds left, he threw a bounce pass between the legs of Portland center Mason Plumlee to Redick so he could take the shot.

It was a thrilling win before an appreciative home crowd. The question is, will it propel the Clippers down the stretch? They entered play Thursday having lost three consecutive games and seven of 10.

“We hope,” Redick said post-game. “We haven’t been very good. Going in to tonight, I think we were 3-7 of our last 10 (games). I don’t know if that is the worst stretch of the season going back to November, but it definitely felt like the worst stretch.”

The Clippers went 3-7 over 10 games beginning Nov. 4.

“A few of us talked after, just about that, discussing that we don’t want to be limping in to the playoffs,” said Redick, whose team next plays host to Denver (30-42) on Easter Sunday at 12:30 p.m. “We want to be playing well. Last year, we were 14-2 going into the playoffs in our last 16 games.

“I don’t necessarily believe in momentum, but I do believe in rhythm and confidence and those things are important and I believe in having the right spirit. Hopefully, tonight will get us going in the right direction.”