Chris Paul after loss to Cavs: Recent defense unacceptable

Wesley Johnson, left, of the Clippers guards Kevin Love of the Cavaliers/AP photo by Tony Dejak


The Clippers allowed only 96.6 points per game during their recent 10-game winning streak. Including Thursday, when the Clippers were defeated 115-102 at Cleveland, the Clippers have given up 357 points over their past three games, two of which were losses.

That’s an average of 119 points. Chris Paul said after Thursday’s loss that has to change.

“No question, our defense has been unacceptable for the past few games,” Paul said. “J.J. (Redick) and I were talking about it. We’re just not being solid, we’re not being disciplined and we’re not doing our principles. It’s nothing on the coaches. It’s just us. The good thing about it is that we know the right things to do. We’ve just got to work on our communication and start talking more.”

The Clippers (27-15) played their 12th consecutive game without Blake Griffin, who is expected to return on this road trip from a partially torn left quad tendon.

Next up for the Clippers, Friday at New York.


Blake Griffin, Kevin Love not certain to play in Monday’s game at Minnesota

There is a chance that the best player on each team won’t play Monday when the Clippers (52-22) play at Minnesota at 5 p.m.

Clippers forward Blake Griffin played only six minutes before going down with back spasms Saturday in a victory at Houston. He was listed as day-to-day. And it’s doubtful coach Doc Rivers would take a chance on playing Griffin if he is not 100 percent or very close to it. The playoffs are around the corner.

For the T’Wolves (36-36), Kevin Love had a poor game in a loss Sunday at Brooklyn, going for just 14 points and nine rebounds – well below his season averages of 26.2 points and 12.6 rebounds. A story on said Love said afterward that he was “exhausted” and might be getting sick.

The Clippers are 3-0 against Minnesota this season, the victories coming by just two, four and four points. Love had 45 points and 19 rebounds in a 120-116 T’Wolves overtime loss to the Clippers on Dec. 22 at Staples Center.