Five things to take from Clippers’ 107-99 victory over T’Wolves


Lance Stephenson

Lance Stephenson/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

Lance Stephenson’s play in nearly 20 minutes off the bench was noteworthy. He scored nine points, grabbed six rebounds, doled out three assists and made one steal. He also brought with him incredible energy.

It was interesting to see that after starting at small forward the previous three games, not only did Wesley Johnson not start, he saw only four minutes and 12 seconds of action off the bench and did not score. Doc Rivers said Johnson needs to play better on defense.

– Speaking of defense, Luc Mbah a Moute started at small forward because Rivers said the team needed that for this particular game. He ended up scoring seven points, and made a big steal down the stretch during an 8-0 run that all but sealed Minnesota’s fate.

– The Clippers committed 13 turnovers, but just three of those came in the second half. Point guard Chris Paul had four of those turnovers and power forward Blake Griffin had three. They also led the team with a combined 46 points – Griffin scoring 26, Paul 20. Griffin also had eight rebounds, eight assists and two blocks. Paul also had nine assists and went 6-for-6 at the free-throw line. Enough said.

– Don’t sleep on the Timberwolves. They may not make the top eight in the Western Conference this season, and yet they could. But over the next few seasons, they could be very good. With a core of rookie center Karl-Anthony Towns, second-year shooting guard Andrew Wiggins and second-year point guard Zach LaVine, they have a bright future.

Blake Griffin has high praise for T’Wolves’ Karl-Anthony Towns

Karl-Anthony Towns

Karl-Anthony Towns/Photo courtesy of Minnesota Timberwolves

Karl-Anthony Towns had just scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds in his Minnesota Timberwolves’ 107-99 loss to the Clippers on Sunday afternoon at Staples Center, when Clippers forward Blake Griffin was asked to assess the rookie from Kentucky.

“Towns is tough,” Griffiin said of the 7-foot center. “I liked his game at Kentucky just watching him. He seems to be a great kid, great player, obviously. He has so much room to grow. He has such a high ceiling that he is going to be tough (in the future).”

Towns was averaging 14.2 points and 9.4 rebounds through 16 games ahead of Sunday.

Blake Griffin likes what he’s seeing now from his Clippers

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


It’s not yet time to get overly excited about the Clippers. After all, they are still only 9-8 after Sunday’s 107-99 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves at Staples Center.

But the Clippers have won three of their past four, and they are executing better down the stretch. Sunday, they saw their 15-point lead cut to five with 4:03 left to play in the game. Instead of folding, they scored the next eight points for a 13-point cushion (96-83) and emerged victorious.

Blake Griffin, who scored a game-high 26 points with eight rebounds and eight assists, likes what’s he’s seeing now.

“We are playing better,” he said. “We came out flat for some games that we shouldn’t have, but everyone has really stepped up and it has become more about the team.”

Blake Griffin, Chris Paul each score 10 as Clippers lead T’Wolves

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


Blake Griffin and Chris Paul scored 10 points apiece as the Clippers took a 48-37 lead over the Minnesota Timberwolves into the locker room at halftime Sunday at Staples Center.

Lance Stephenson had seven points, four rebounds, two assists and a steal off the bench for the Clippers.

Andrew Wiggins led the T’Wolves with 11 points and Karl-Anthony Towns scored eight.

The Clippers led by as many as 16 points.

Both teams entered 8-8.


J.J. Redick: Clippers need to take advantage of this homestand

J.J. Redick

J.J. Redick/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


The Clippers on Friday night emerged with a 111-90 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans at Staples Center. Even though New Orleans came in 4-11, it had won three in a row. The Pelicans were also missing their best player – Anthony Davis – for the last quarter-plus after he knocked knees with Chris Paul.

All that said, it was still a nice win for the Clippers (8-8), who have struggled mightily at the outset of this campaign. But they need to run off several more before they can start to feel good about themselves, and now is the time to do it.

That was the sentiment of J.J. Redick, who scored 20 points in the victory.

“We can’t look at this as something where we can ease into things or that we eventually will start winning,” he said. “It has to be now. That seems to be the atmosphere in the locker room. We have to take advantage of this homestand. The biggest thing for us is winning these games at home and setting ourselves up because when you go on a five-game East Coast swing, things happen and those games are always tough, so we have to take care of business this week.”

The Clippers are 1-1 on this six-game homestand. They will play four more – against Minnesota (Sunday), Portland (Monday), Indiana (Wednesday) and Orlando (next Saturday).

The Clippers then hit the road for five games – at Minnesota, Milwaukee, Chicago, Brooklyn and Detroit.

Five things to take from Clippers’ 111-90 victory over Pelicans

J.J. Redick

J.J. Redick/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

  • J.J. Redick had his best game in five since missing three games with back spasms. He scored 20 points on 8 of 14 shooting, 3 of 3 from 3-point range. Afterward, Redick admitted he had yet to find his wind after not doing a thing for eight days during the time he missed. The Clippers need Redick to be all he can be.
  • Josh Smith turned the ball over four times in nearly 22 minutes off the bench. But he made up for it by pulling down a game-high 12 rebounds.
  • Real nice game by reserve guard Austin Rivers. He had 17 points on 7 of 11 shooting with just one turnover in 23 minutes and 38 seconds.
  • Likewise, Lance Stephenson was yet another reserve who played well as the Clippers got it going with both their first and second units. Stephenson scored 10 points, grabbed five rebounds, doled out four assists and provided tremendous energy.
  • The Clippers (8-8) were outrebounded 50-49 and still have not outrebounded an opponent this season.