VIDEO: Check out this lob and dunk pulled off by Thunder in their win over Clippers on Thursday

A lot is made of the lob passes from Clippers point guard Chris Paul to center DeAndre Jordan that result in booming dunks by Jordan.

Well, the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday displayed their prowess in this regard on this rather beautiful play during OKC’s 119-117 victory over the visiting Clippers at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Check out the connection between Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook and forward Kevin Durant. That’s the Clippers’ Jeff Green on defense:

Five things to take from Clippers’ 119-117 loss at Oklahoma City

Jamal Crawford, center, of the Clippers shoots a 3-pointer during the Clippers’ 119-117 loss Thursday at Oklahoma City/AP photo by Alonzo Adams


– The Clippers rested starters Chris Paul, J.J. Redick and DeAndre Jordan and still nearly pulled off what would have been quite an upset had they emerged victorious at Chesapeake Energy Arena. That, alone, is impressive.

– The Clippers were close due in large part to the play of Jamal Crawford and Austin Rivers. They started at the guard spots for Redick and Paul and came through with 32 points apiece. Crawford also had seven assists and two steals. Rivers also had four rebounds, five assists and two steals. Crawford played 39 minutes and 57 seconds, Rivers played 39 minutes and 13 seconds. Rivers shot 7 of 9 from 3-point range.

– One has to wonder how the Clippers could get outrebounded 46-26 and still have a shot at winning the game. Well, it helps when you shoot extremely well. The Clippers shot 55.3 percent overall. More importantly, they went 16 of 29 from 3-point range, a tremendous 55.2 percent. By contrast, OKC shot just 31.2 percent (10 of 32) from beyond the arc.

– While the Clippers (47-28) were resting their stars, the Thunder (53-23) did not. Starters Kevin Durant (31 points), Russell Westrbrook (26) and Serge Ibaka (16) combined for 73 points. And the Clippers still almost beat them.

– By the time Thursday night was over, there was one very interesting item noted in the playoff standings. That would be sixth-place Portland now being just 1 1/2 games behind fifth-place Memphis in the Western Conference standings. If the Trail Blazers pass the Grizzlies, they will play the Clippers in the first round of the playoffs, which begin in about 2 1/2 weeks. Portland (40-36) has six games left in the regular season, Memphis (41-34) has seven.

Clippers don’t have a comeback in them this time, fall at OKC

Jeff Green

Jeff Green led the Clippers with 23 points on Wednesday at Oklahoma City/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


The Clippers didn’t have a comeback in them this time. A week after they came from 17 points down after three quarters to earn a five-point victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder at Staples Center, the Clippers took on the Thunder on Wednesday night in Oklahoma City.

The Thunder led by 19 points with 6:35 to play and the Clippers quickly whittled six points off that to trail by 13. But OKC eventually prevailed 120-108 in the pivotal Western Conference game at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

The victory gave third-place OKC (44-20) some breathing room as it now leads the Clippers (41-22) by 2 1/2 games in the conference standings.

Jeff Green led the Clippers with 23 points on 10 of 13 shooting, J.J. Redick scored 22, DeAndre Jordan had 18 points but only seven rebounds – well below his season average of 14.1 – and Chris Paul had 12  points, 16 assists and five steals. Jamal Crawford led the reserves with 16 points and Cole Aldrich had 10 points and six rebounds.

The two-headed monster of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook was just mean. Durant had 30 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists. Westbrook had 25 points, 20 assists and 11 rebounds. However, Westbrook did have seven turnovers and Durant committed six.

The Thunder outrebounded the Clippers by a whopping 52-29 count.



VIDEO: Clippers’ J.J. Redick wants no part of this Kevin Durant dunk

The Clippers rallied from 17 points down after three quarters to emerge with a 103-98 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday at Staples Center. Since the game belonged to the Thunder until the fourth quarter, they had some outstanding moments. One can bet the Clippers’ J.J. Redick would rather not think about this one. Check out OKC’s Kevin Durant throwing down and dirty on Redick in the second quarter when the Thunder were in control:


Five things to take from Clippers’ 103-98 victory over Thunder

Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul, left, shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, March 2, 2016, in Los Angeles. AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Chris Paul (3) of the Clippers is being defended by Kevin Durant of Oklahoma City. Paul scored 21 points and doled out 13 assists in the Clippers’ 103-98 come-from-behind victory/AP photo by Mark J. Terrill


– This was the Clippers’ biggest comeback of the season. They were down by as many as 22, and by 17 (85-68) entering the fourth quarter against one of the best teams in the league, with arguably two of the top five players in the league in Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

– Coach Doc Rivers praised the defense his son Austin played on Durant when he was on the OKC forward. Austin Rivers is listed at 6-foot-4, Durant at 6-9 – though Durant is more like 6-11. Durant scored 30 points, but he shot just 12 of 27, 3 of 12 from 3-point range. The younger Rivers played for the first time in a month, since fracturing his left hand. He is part of the second unit, which also received kudos from the elder Rivers for starting the comeback.

DeAndre Jordan scored 20 points and grabbed 18 rebounds. He also made 4 of 7 from the free-throw line, including both of his attempts in the all-important fourth quarter, when the Clippers were making their comeback. His basket and free throw with 1:12 to play put the Clippers up for good at 99-97.

Wesley Johnson started 1 of 11 from the field. But he hit two clutch 3-pointers in the fourth quarters. The last one – with 4:27 to play – pulled the Clippers within 95-87, cutting the Clippers’ deficit to under 10 for the first time since the 3:41 mark of the first quarter.

– The Clippers played suffocating defense on the Thunder in the fourth quarter, when the Clippers outscored them 35-13. OKC scored just five points over the final 7 minutes and 26 seconds.

BONUS TAKE: The victory pulled the fourth-place Clippers (40-20) within 1 1/2 games of third-place OKC (42-19) in the Western Conference standings.

Clippers getting hammered, trail visiting OKC by 20 at halftime

J.J. Redick

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


Kevin Durant scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds and Russell Westbrook scored 10 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder rolled to a 58-38 halftime lead over the Clippers on Wednesday night at Staples Center.

The Thunder (42-18) shot 43.4 percent overall, 47.1 (8 of 17) from 3-point range.

J.J. Redick led the Clippers with 10 points, Chris Paul scored eight and DeAndre Jordan had seven points and seven rebounds.

The Clippers (39-20) shot just 30 percent overall, 23.5 (4 of 17) from beyond the arc.