Doc Rivers says his team’s four technical fouls Sunday were out of frustration

Jamal Crawford

Jamal Crawford received one of four technical fouls levied the Clippers on Sunday/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

The Clippers on Sunday received four technical fouls in their 104-90 loss to the visiting Miami Heat. DeAndre Jordan and Chris Paul were T’d up in the first quarter, Matt Barnes in the third and Jamal Crawford not quite midway through the fourth quarter when the Clippers were down by 12 points.

Coach Doc Rivers, in so many words, admitted the four technicals might have been a result of his team being irritated by their struggles in the game.

“It was part of the frustration,” he said. “I don’t think the refs had anything to do with this game, that’s for sure. But when you’re tired, frustrated, that happens. I don’t like the techs, I thought they were quick techs; the first two, for sure. But it doesn’t matter, they were still techs.”

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Chris Paul tries to explain 14-point loss to Miami after a terrific start by his team

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

When the Clippers bolted to a 19-6 lead midway through the first quarter Sunday against the visiting Miami Heat, it appeared the Clippers would march to their third consecutive victory. But as quickly as they got that lead, it disappeared and never materialized again in the Clippers’ 104-90 loss to a Heat team that is now just 16-21.

Chris Paul tried to explain.

“Our defense sort of let up tonight,” Paul said. “We were scoring pretty effortlessly and I guess we thought it was going to be like that all game.”

It wasn’t.

The Clippers, now 25-13, next play Wednesday night at Portland, which took a 29-8 record into its Sunday night game against the Lakers, also at Staples Center.

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Miami Heat have hot-shooting first half and lead Clippers 62-53 at break

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

The Miami Heat shot 55.6 percent in the first half and lead the Clippers 62-53 at the break at Staples Center.

Chris Bosh paced Miami with 17 points in the half while Chris Paul scored 12 for the Clippers and Blake Griffin had 10.

 

 

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A 13-0 run by Miami Heat gives them a 30-29 lead over Clippers after one

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

The Clippers got off to a quick start Sunday, leading the Miami Heat 19-6. But the Heat went on a 13-0 run and eventually led 30-29 after one quarter at Staples Center.

Chris Paul scored 10 points in the quarter for Los Angeles (25-12), with Hassan Whiteside scoring 12 for Miami (15-21).

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Blake Griffin says Saturday’s win over Dallas a good one, but won’t rank it

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin scored 22 points to lead the Clippers on Saturday afternoon/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

Blake Griffin’s Clippers on Saturday afternoon had just routed the Dallas Mavericks 120-100 after leading by as many as 26 points in the fourth quarter at Staples Center. Since the Clippers have struggled against winning teams and were just 1-4 in their previous five such games heading in, Griffin was asked where this victory ranks this season.

“It is a good win,” he said. “I’m not really into ranking wins, but this is definitely a good win. Hopefully, we can build on it.”

Griffin scored 22 points to lead the Clippers, who had all five starters and sixth-man Jamal Crawford score in double figures.

Crawford scored 19, Matt Barnes had 18 points, Chris Paul had 17 points with 13 assists, J.J. Redick scored 16 and DeAndre Jordan had 13 points and 15 rebounds.

The Clippers (25-12) next play host to the Miami Heat (15-21) on Sunday at 12:30 p.m.

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Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle can’t say enough about point guard Chris Paul

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle on Saturday morning was asked to assess Clippers point guard Chris Paul ahead of a 12:30 p.m. game between the teams. He could not have spoken in more flattering terms.

“He’s great in all phases,” Carlisle said. “He’s great on offense, a great defensive player, he’s disruptive, and he’s a great leader. He has all the qualities of a great player and he’s got the skill and all the athletic ability, too. He’s having a great year. He’s doing things very efficiently.”

Paul entered play Saturday averaging 17.8 points and 9.5 assists.

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Kobe notices Byron Scott didn’t squeeze the Charmin after rout by Clippers

Chris Paul, right, had 24 points and 11 assists in rout of Lakers on Wednesday. Afterward, Lakers coach Byron Scott called his team ‘soft’ and Kobe Bryant responded to him/Staff photo by John McCoy

 

Remember when Lakers guard Kobe Bryant called his teammates “soft as Charmin” during a Dec. 11 practice? Well, his coach – Byron Scott – called his team “soft” several times Wednesday night after they were annihilated by the Clippers 114-89 – the Clippers had as much as a 43-point lead.

Bryant was asked to respond to his coach’s rant, and he came with this:

“He said the same thing I said,” Bryant said. “He just didn’t use a toilet paper analogy.”

 

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Blake Griffin: Chris Paul on bench in third quarter really hurt in loss to Hawks

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin scored 26 points in Monday’s loss to Atlanta/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

The Clippers on Monday trailed the Atlanta Hawks by just two points (60-58) when Chris Paul had to leave the game with seven minutes to play in the third quarter because of his fourth foul. In came backup Jordan Farmar, and by the time the quarter ended the Hawks held a 77-69 lead on their way to a 107-98 victory at Staples Center.

Not that Farmar, who went scoreless on 0 of 5 shooting, was the only reason the Clippers lost because there is more blame to pass around. But Blake Griffin said it did hurt not having Paul in there at a time when he usually is in the thick of things.

“When C.P. is not out here, that is a voice that is gone,” Griffin said. “That’s one of our best players and our playmaker. Vocally and even just playing-wise, I have to step up and do a better job. I didn’t do a great job tonight of taking advantage of mismatches and finding open guys and things like that. I need to do a better job there in that third quarter because when he was sitting, that was kind of when we lost it.”

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Five things to take from the Clippers’ 107-98 loss to the Atlanta Hawks

Chris Paul

Chris Paul scored just 10 points in Monday’s loss to Atlanta/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

- The  Clippers (23-12) entered this game with a record of 7-9 against teams with winning records before the night’s slate of games. Not only do they now have 10 losses against teams currently with winning teams, their win total in that department dropped to six when New Orleans lost at home to Washington on Monday night, meaning the Pelicans are no longer a winning team; they are 17-17. The Clippers defeated New Orleans by 20 points on Dec. 6 at Staples Center.

- Coach Doc Rivers was very diplomatic about his team’s record against winning teams before and after the game. But you better believe he has to be worried. He took much longer than usual to get to the post-game news conference, and then he said he was meeting with a “couple of guys.” Chris Paul actually came to the news conference before Rivers did, and that never happens.

- The bench play was atrocious, except perhaps for Jamal Crawford, who scored 10 points on 3 of 9 shooting – 2 of 5 from 3-point range. Spencer Hawes looked out of sync and had just three points on 1 of 6 shooting. He grabbed four rebounds, but he also had three turnovers in just 17 minutes.

- Speaking of turnovers, the Clippers had an uncharacteristic 21. And unfortunately for them, six of them were in the fourth quarter when Atlanta pulled away to a 17-lead with 6:03 to play. As Rivers said post-game, 23 assists and 21 turnovers are not going to win many games. Certainly not against a team like Atlanta.

- Chris Paul afterward admitted he was not aggressive enough on offense. He averages 13.6 shots per game on the season, but took just nine in this one. He made four and scored just 10 points, well below his season average of 17.9.

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Chris Paul believes team reaped benefits of practice, two days between games

Chris Paul

Chris Paul was two rebounds short of a triple-double in Saturday’s rout of Philadelphia/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

When the Clippers played and defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 127-91 on Saturday, it marked the first time the Clippers had two days between games in nearly a month. The days allowed the Clippers to get in their first practice since Dec. 5. It was a good thing, point guard Chris Paul said.

“It definitely helped,” Paul, who had 24 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds, said post-game. “We had a good practice (Friday) and the rest really helps. I think today we felt like we had our legs under us a little bit more.”

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