Chris Paul’s 30 points help Clippers put away lowly Kings 116-105 at Sleep Train

Chris Paul

Chris Paul scored 30 points in the Clippers’ victory Wednesday night at Sacramento/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


Once again minus Jamal Crawford (calf) and Matt Barnes (hamstring), it took the Clippers some time to put the lowly Sacramento Kings away. But Chris Paul’s 3-pointer with 3:44 to play was the dagger in their 116-105 victory Wednesday night at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento.

Paul’s basket gave him 30 points on the night, and it gave the Clippers a 13-point lead at 106-93. The Clippers – 44-25 – remained tied with Dallas for fifth-place in the Western Conference standings.

J.J. Redick contributed 27 points for the Clippers, Blake Griffin had 19 points in his third game back. He also had 10 rebounds and five assists. Hedo Turkoglu, starting for Barnes, came through with 19 points on 7 of 12 shooting – 5 of 10 from 3-point range. DeAndre Jordan scored just six points, but he grabbed 15 rebounds and blocked four shots.

The Clippers shot 51.1 percent from the field, 45.9 (17 of 37) from 3-point range.

The Kings (22-45) got 23 points from Rudy Gay and 16 off the bench from Andre Miller. They were without center DeMarcus Cousins (calf) and guard Darren Collison, who has not played since early February because of a hip injury.

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Five things to take from Clippers’ 99-92 victory over the Charlotte Hornets

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


– The Clippers were missing Jamal Crawford (calf) and Matt Barnes (hamstring) as well as Jordan Hamilton, who was not re-signed after his second 10-day contract expired because he currently can’t play because of a high ankle sprain. But is that why they nearly blew a 22-point lead? They led 63-41 two minutes into the third quarter, only to see the Hornets come within a point early in the fourth. No, that’s not it. Bottom line is, it was still too early in the game to say the Clippers may have been tired because they were thin. They just stopped playing well, plain and simple, and they admitted that. It’s something we have seen many times this season, and it’s something that is going to bite them in the post-season if they don’t knock it off. By the way, Charlotte (29-37) was coming off a 28-point loss (94-66) a night earlier at Utah. The Hornets should have been the tired ones.

Blake Griffin was more aggressive offensively in his second game back after missing 15 with a staph infection in his right elbow. He scored 19 points with 11 rebounds, four assists and three steals. Griffin scored 15 of his points in the first half, shooting 7 of 9. He finished 8 of 12 from the field, taking only three shots in the second half. There was a point in the second half where Griffin threw up a shot and missed, then bent at the knees as if in pain.

J.J. Redick continued his fine play. He scored 23 points on 10 of 17 shooting, though he did miss all four of his 3-point attempts. Still, he is now averaging 20.0 points in nine games this month. He’s averaging 15.4 on the season. He’s shooting a career-high 46.4 percent from the field, 41.9 percent from 3-point range – also a career best.

Nate Robinson celebrated the signing of his second 10-day contract with his best game since joining the Clippers. He scored 12 points off the bench on 4 of 10 shooting, 2 of 5 from 3-point range. He entered the game shooting just 24.1 percent in five previous games with the team.

– Charlotte turned to the old hack-a-DJ with 4:20 left in the game. Over the next minute and a half, DeAndre Jordan was fouled on purpose three times. He made three of those six free throws and finished 6 of 12 (50 percent) for the night. That might not seem like much, but when considering Jordan shoots only 40.4 percent from the free-throw for the season, it’s not bad. Also, consider that when the Hornets began their intentional fouling, they were down by four points. When they finished, they were still down by four, so their ploy went for naught.

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Five things to take from Clippers’ 100-98 loss Sunday to the Houston Rockets

James Harden (No. 13) and Trevor Ariza of the Rockets celebrate their 100-98 victory over the Clippers as Chris Paul and Matt Barnes look on/Photo by Kelvin Kuo, Associated Press

– People are going to wonder if Blake Griffin’s return from a staph infection in his right elbow threw the team out of whack and that was why it committed 20 turnovers. Griffin had five of them, DeAndre Jordan four and Chris Paul and J.J. Redick three apiece. But if you watched the game, it really didn’t appear that way. Griffin’s five turnovers certainly had to do with rust, but coach Doc Rivers afterward said he didn’t think that Griffin affected the team’s rhythm, even if Griffin’s timing was off. Griffin’s high for turnovers this season is six in a 101-97 victory Dec. 29. He had five on four other occasions.

– Griffin made 4 of 10 shots from the field, scored 11 points with 11 rebounds and eight assists. He also had two steals and a block. Under the circumstances, that wasn’t too shabby at all. He said his elbow was sore at the end, but that was expected. Griffin also told reporters he has only 60 percent of his strength in his right triceps as a result of his down time.

Jordan Hamilton had a good game off the bench, scoring eight points on 3 of 5 shooting – 2 of 3 from beyond the arc. But he sustained a high ankle sprain late in the third quarter and did not return. Hamilton’s second 10-day contract is up, and coach Rivers said after the game that he was going to more than likely sign Hamilton for the rest of the season.

– It’s somewhat amazing that the Rockets shot just 37.2 percent from the field – 23.3 percent (7 of 30) from 3-point range – and they still beat a Clippers team that shot 43.9 percent overall, 46.2 percent (12 of 26) from beyond the arc. All one has to do is look at what happened at the free-throw line for an explanation. Houston shot 36 free throws and made 29 for an 80.6 percent clip. The Clippers shot 24 and made just 14 (58.3 percent). DeAndre Jordan was just 1 of 8, and his season percentage is now 40.1.

– The Clippers had done a fine job holding down James Harden in three previous games. He had scored 16, nine and 21 points while shooting just 12 of 37 from the field (32.4 percent) – 3 of 20 (15 percent) from 3-point range. He scored 34 points in this one, making 7 of 16 from the field, 3 of 5 from beyond the arc. His aggressive play allowed him to go to the free-throw line 18 times and he made 17. Harden is averaging 26.9 points on the season, second in the league behind Russell Westbrook (27.5).


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Chris Paul says of 30-point loss at Dallas on Friday: ‘You have to flush it’

Spencer Hawes, left, and J.J. Redick watch the final moments of the Clippers’ 129-99 loss Friday night at Dallas/Photo by Tim Sharp, Associated Press


The Clippers on Friday night had just been routed 129-99 by the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center in Dallas when point guard Chris Paul was asked to talk about how his team will get past such a defeat, its most lopsided of the season. Dallas shot a whopping 60.7 percent from the field, 57.1 (16 of 28) from 3-point range.

Paul’s response made sense.

“They can have this one,” said Paul, whose team finished 2-1 against the Mavericks. “We have to get ready for the game on Sunday. This was ugly. I don’t think we play them anymore. You have to flush it.”

The Clippers (42-24) play host to the Houston Rockets on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at Staples Center.

J.J. Redick led the Clippers with 17 points Friday, DeAndre Jordan had 16 points and 18 rebounds, Matt Barnes scored 14 and Paul and Jordan Hamilton scored 11 points apiece with Paul getting seven assists and five steals to boot.

Spencer Hawes struggled again, scoring four points on 2 of 8 shooting with five rebounds.

The Clippers shot shot 50 percent from the field overall, 37.5 (12 of 32) from beyond the arc.

Dallas (42-25) got 22 points from Chandler Parsons and 19 from Charlie Villanueva off the bench.

The Clippers remained in fifth in the Western Conference standings, but Dallas is now in sixth, just a half-game behind.

The Clippers are now 9-6 without Blake Griffin (elbow). Sixth-man Jamal Crawford (calf) missed his fifth consecutive game.

The Clippers were outscored 70-48 in the second half.

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Doc Rivers likes performance without Blake Griffin, but doesn’t go overboard in praising team’s 9-5 record without him

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


Clippers coach Doc Rivers is always very careful with what he says to reporters. You could say he practices diplomacy.

For example, after the Clippers won Wednesday 120-108 at Oklahoma City, Rivers was asked about the growth of his team without the injured Blake Griffin. Griffin has missed the past 14 games because of a staph infection in his right elbow. Several Clippers – most notably Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, J.J. Redick and reserve Glen “Big Baby” Davis – have really picked up the slack in Griffin’s absence.

But Rivers did not go crazy about that with his response.

“Yeah, I guess. I mean, I don’t know,” he said. “We have had some tough games in the stretches that Blake has been out, and to win some of these games has been big for us, especially to win some on the road; those are huge wins for us.”

It’s almost as if Rivers either doesn’t want to jinx his team by saying just how well it has played without Griffin, or he doesn’t want Griffin or anyone else thinking that Griffin is not as important as he truly is to this team. Sure, he complimented his team, but seemed to temper his remarks.

The Clippers are 9-5 without Griffin. Six of the victories have come against teams that are either a virtual lock to make the playoffs or in the case of two victories over OKC, a team that likely will make the post-season but has more of a fight on its hands to get there.

Bottom line is, yes, the Clippers are doing very well sans Griffin. But they’ll never go that far in the post-season without him. There is no question about that.


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Five things to take from the Clippers’ 120-108 victory at Oklahoma City

Chris Paul goes up for two of his 33 points with OKC’s Russell Westbrook guarding him/Photo by Alonzo Adams, Associated Press


– Point guard Chris Paul had a terrific game. He scored 33 points on 11 of 19 shooting – 5 of 8 from 3-point range. He also helped throw a blanket over OKC point guard Russell Westbrook, who has been phenomenal this season – especially of late. Since Feb. 2 he had produced six 40-plus point games and six triple-doubles. He was held to 24 points Wednesday on 5 of 14 shooting. He was just 2 of 8 from the field for seven points and seven of his 10 turnovers while Paul was guarding him. Paul has averaged 22 points and 13.4 assists in the past 14 games, all of which have been missed by Blake Griffin (elbow).

J.J. Redick also came up with another fine performance. He scored 25 points with five rebounds, seven assists and three steals. Redick has averaged 22.6 points in five games this month while shooting a combined 48.3 percent from the field – 41 percent from beyond the arc.

– What the heck is going on with Spencer Hawes? He scored just four points on 1 of 7 shooting in 31 1/2 minutes of action. The 7-foot-1 big gathered only three rebounds. In his past five games he’s made just 11 of 40 field-goal attempts (27.5 percent) while averaging 5.8 points and just 3.6 rebounds. In one of those games, Monday’s victory over Minnesota, Hawes had one measly rebound in 23 minutes. Though a center by trade, Hawes has been starting at power forward for Griffin.

Matt Barnes was feeling it in this one. The small forward out of UCLA burned the Thunder for 22 points on 6 of 8 shooting. Barnes made all of his field-goal attempts from 3-point range, going 6 of 7 from beyond the arc. Barnes also was solid on defense as he came through with three steals and two blocks.

– So the Thunder and coach Scott Brooks went to the hack-a-DJ ploy in this one and DeAndre Jordan responded by making 12 of 22 from the free-throw line. That is 54.5 percent. For someone shooting just 41 percent on the season, that is not too shabby. Beginning with 7:50 left in the game, Jordan made seven of his final 10 free-throw attempts. He had 17 points and 18 rebounds.

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Chris Paul’s 33 points help Clippers to big 120-108 victory at Oklahoma City

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


The Clippers on Wednesday night came through with an impressive 120-108 victory at Oklahoma City. Perhaps most outstanding was the game had by Chris Paul. He scored a game-high 33 points on 11 of 19 shooting – 5 of 8 from 3-point range – and also doled out nine assists with two steals and five turnovers.  Two days earlier in a victory over Minnesota on Monday, Paul had 15 assists but just two points and was noticeably hobbled by a right knee bruise.

The Clippers are now 9-5 without Blake Griffin (elbow). Jamal Crawford (calf) missed his fourth consecutive game. The Thunder were without reigning MVP Kevin Durant (foot).

Paul was not alone in his heroics. J.J. Redick scored 25 points and Matt Barnes had 22. DeAndre Jordan scored 18 points and grabbed 17 rebounds and survived more hack-a-DJ by making 12 of 22 from the free-throw line. Glen “Big Baby” Davis contributed 12 points, three rebounds and two steals off the bench.

The Clippers (42-23) shot 46.1 percent overall, 50 percent (15 of 30) from 3-point range.

OKC (35-29) fell out of the top eight in the Western Conference and is now ninth, a half-game behind New Orleans (36-29). The Clippers are fifth.

Anthony Morrow led the Thunder with 26 points off the bench. Russell Westbrook scored 24 points, but he shot just 5 of 14 from the field. He had seven assists and nine rebounds, but 10 turnovers.

Next up is Dallas (41-25) on Friday. The Mavericks are seventh in the West.

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Five things to take from Clippers’ 89-76 victory over the Timberwolves

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


– First and foremost, we must give kudos to Chris Paul. He was hobbled by a bruised right knee because he banged knees a day earlier in Golden State. He scored only two points on 1 of 6 shooting, but he was able to dole out 15 assists, leading his much-depleted team very
well. The T’Wolves (14-48) have the worst record in the West and had nothing to lose, so they played hard. With the Clippers already sans Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford, it wasn’t an easy game to win.

– The Clippers are now 8-5 without Griffin and 1-2 without both Griffin (elbow) and Crawford (calf). Coach Doc Rivers said he expects Griffin will be back before Crawford. Rivers did not have an exact timetable, but he did say Griffin could be back in a week. That said, Rivers
said Griffin might travel with the team on the upcoming trip that includes games Wednesday at Oklahoma City and Friday at Dallas. Crawford will not travel. We should also note that while Griffin was on the bench in a suit Monday, Crawford was nowhere to be seen. Keep in mind that he missed 13 games last season with a strained left calf.

Nate Robinson played in his second game with the Clippers since signing a 10-day contract. He played nearly 17 rather unproductive minutes. Robinson scored four points on just 1 of 9 shooting, but the 5-foot-9 guard did grab five rebounds.

– Reserve guard Austin Rivers had another good game off the bench. He came through with 13 points on 5 of 8 shooting – 2 of 4 from 3-point range – with four rebounds, six assists and two steals. Rivers had 22 points in Sunday’s loss at Golden State.

– The Timberwolves outrebounded the Clippers 50-42, but DeAndre Jordan led all players with 17 rebounds. He also scored 20 points on 10 of 11 shooting and caught no less than three perfectly thrown lobs from Paul for monster dunks that made the crowd roar. No one else on the team had more than five rebounds. Interestingly, 7-foot-1 Spencer Hawes was of little help in this regard as he had one lousy rebound in nearly 23 minutes.

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J.J. Redick scores 14 points in first half, Clippers lead T’Wolves 48-39 at break

J.J. Redick

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

J.J. Redick scored 14 points in the first half and DeAndre Jordan scored 10 and pulled down 11 rebounds as the Clippers (40-23) took a 48-39 lead over the Minnesota Timberwolves into halftime Monday night at Staples Center.

Andrew Wiggins led Minnesota (14-47) with 10 points.



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Five things to take from Clippers’ 106-98 loss to Golden State at Oracle Arena

DeAndre Jordan sits on the bench in the second half as Clippers are about to lose to the Golden State Warriors. Jordan had with 14 rebounds, meaning his streak of 10 consecutive games with at least 15 rebounds was halted/Photo by Jeff Chiu, Associated Press


– Let’s face it, trying to beat Golden State anywhere is tough. Trying to beat Golden State without Blake Griffin and Jamal Crawford is almost unthinkable. When you add into the equation that this game was played at Oracle Arena in Oakland, well, all you can do is tip your cap to the Clippers for getting this close. They fared better without Griffin and Crawford than they did in November when they lost by 17 points at Oracle. The Clippers once again showed the mettle that should help them in the post-season.

– Although newest Clippers guard Nate Robinson did not have a good first game for Doc Rivers – he scored five points on 1 of 6 shooting in 20 minutes – he did have three assists and zero turnovers. The bench, on the whole, played well with Austin Rivers leading the way with 22 points – a team-high. Glen “Big Baby” Davis had eight points and seven rebounds and Hedo Turkoglu scored 12 points while making 4 of 7 from 3-point range.

– It was nice to see the retun of small forward Matt Barnes, who had missed the previous two games with a hamstring injury. He played well enough, going for nine points on 4 of 7 shooting – he was 0 of 3 from 3-point range – while doling out two assists and blocking a shot. He had nary a rebound, however, in his 23 minutes.

– The Clippers had 18 turnovers in this game. That makes it very difficult to beat any team, let alone the team with the best record in the Western Conference. Five of those turnovers were point guard Chris Paul’s and four of them belonged to reserve guard Austin Rivers. That’s not going to cut it.

DeAndre Jordan had a mere 14 rebounds. He needed one more to extend his streak of at least 15 rebounds. But it was stopped at 10. During the run he had games of 27, 20, 22 and 26 rebounds. Jordan is averaging a league-high 14.5 rebounds with 19 regular-season games left. In second is Andre Drummond of Detroit. He’s averaging 13.0 rebounds.

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