Doc Rivers says Trail Blazers played harder, deserved to win

Clippers guard Chris Paul, right, drives to the basket past Portland Trail Blazers forward Maurice Harkless on Saturday night.
(AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer)

Chris Paul, right, is defended by Portland’s Maurice Harkless during Saturday’s game at Moda Center in Portland/AP photo by Craig Mitchelldyer


Clippers coach Doc Rivers didn’t want to hear that his team might have lacked focus in its 96-88 loss to Portland on Saturday in Game 3 of their first-round playoff series with the Trail Blazers at Moda Center. He would rather compliment Portland, which is what he did post-game.

“Yeah, it wasn’t the focus,” Rivers said. “It’s so easy when you lose, it’s focus; that’s the easy way. They played hard. They were tougher, they destroyed us on the glass, they ran harder, they got to their spots quicker, they got to the loose balls faster. They played hard, so they deserved to win the game. I really thought they deserved to win the game.”

The Trail Blazers outrebounded the Clippers 56-44. Sixteen of Portland’s rebounds were of the offensive variety, resulting in 18 second-chance points. The Clippers scored 14 points off of their 11 offensive rebounds.

The Clippers lead the series 2-1. It continues with Game 4 Monday night at Moda Center.