Chris Paul scores 13 as Clippers lead Lakers 52-44 at halftime

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


Chris Paul scored 13 points and Jeff Green scored 11 as the Clippers on Tuesday night took a lead of 52-44 over the Lakers into the halftime break at Staples Center.

This is the first of a back-to-back with the Lakers, meaning it’s the final two times the Clippers will play against the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant, who is retiring after this season.

Bryant began the game shooting 0 of 8, but made his final two shots of the half. He has six points. D’Angelo Russell led the Lakers with 12 points and Metta World Peace scored 10.

Clippers prepare to take on LeBron James and Cleveland Cavaliers

Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant, right, watches his shot as Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Thursday, March 10, 2016, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

Cleveland’s LeBron James guards the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant during the Cavaliers’ 120-108 victory Thursday at Staples Center. James and the Cavs will take on the Clippers on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at Staples Center/AP photo by Danny Moloshok


For the L.A. Clippers, it would be nice if they could take on the Cleveland Cavaliers with Blake Griffin back in the lineup. That way they could really get an idea of where they’re at just more than a month away from the post-season.

That’s not the case, though, as Griffin has yet to be medically cleared from his partially torn left quad tendon and fractured right hand. Once he is, he’ll still have to serve a four-game suspension for punching Matias Testi, a team equipment staffer, on Jan. 23 in Toronto.

Coach Doc Rivers realizes what his Clippers will be up against when they square off with the Eastern Conference-leading Cavaliers (46-18), who have the third-best record in the league behind Golden State and San Antonio, Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at Staples Center.

“They’re tough, they’re playing good basketball,” Rivers said. “They have so many players, you know, that could make plays. And that’s what makes them dangerous. Obviously, LeBron (James), but Kyrie (Irving) and (Kevin) Love. Their other guys are playing well for them, too, so it’s going to be a tough matchup for us.”

The Cavaliers have won five of their past six after losing two in a row – at Toronto (99-97) on Feb. 26 and at Washington (113-99) on Feb. 28.
Small forward James leads his team in scoring and assists with respective averages of 24.9 and 6.6. Power forward Love is averaging 15.8 points and a team-high 10 rebounds and point guard Irving is averaging 19.8 points and 4.6 assists.

The Cavaliers defeated the Clippers 115-102 on Jan. 21 in Cleveland. Griffin did not play in that game, either, as he has not played since Christmas night against the Lakers.

The Clippers (42-22) are 25-9 sans Griffin.

Five things to take from Clippers’ 105-93 victory over the Lakers

DeAndre Jordan dunks during the Clippers’ 105-93 victory over the Lakers on Friday night at Staples Center/Staff photo by Hans Gutknecht


– Reserves Austin Rivers, Lance Stephenson and Jamal Crawford scored 17, 16 and 15 points, respectively. When a team’s bench plays like that, it’s tough to beat. Although Crawford shot just 5 of 13, Rivers shot 8 of 14, Stephenson 6 of 7.

– The highlight-reel play of the game was Stephenson’s high-flying dunk over Lakers power forward Julius Randle in the fourth quarter. Stephenson is 6-foot-5, Randle is 6-9. Staples Center went crazy as this was a Clippers home game.

DeAndre Jordan pulled down 17 rebounds. That means he has 19, 19 and 17 in his past three games. He has raised his average to 13.7, second to Detroit’s Andre Drummond, whose average is 15.1.

– It was a rare off night for J.J. Redick, who is having his best shooting season in his career, which is in its 10th season. Redick shot just 2 of 10 from the field, 1 of 6 from 3-point range.

– The Clippers won this game by 12 points, but they were outrebounded by 10 (48-38). The Clippers are one of the worst rebounding teams in the league. At 42.2 per game, they are 24th out of 30 teams. They allow opponents 46.5. That’s a negative differential of 4.3. Only Atlanta’s (minus-5.1) is worse.

BONUS TAKE – The Clippers are now 14-3 without Blake Griffin.

Chris Paul helps Clippers to 54-49 halftime lead over Lakers

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


Chris Paul scored 13 points and Wesley Johnson and Lance Stephenson each scored nine as the Clippers took a 54-49 lead over the Lakers into the halftime break Friday night at Staples Center.

The Clippers shot 51.3 percent in the half, but just 27.3 (3 of 11) from 3-point range.

Jordan Clarkson led the Lakers (9-39) with 11 points.

Kobe Bryant is not playing.

Clippers will not have a starter in Feb. 14 All-Star game in Toronto

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

The starters for the upcoming All-Star game were announced Thursday and nary a Clipper was among them.

Chris Paul finished third among guards in the Western Conference with 624,334 votes. Blake Griffin, who hasn’t played since Christmas night, and DeAndre Jordan finished sixth and 11th among frontcourt players with 651,860 and 269,427 votes, respectively.

The Western Conference starters for the Feb. 14 in Toronto will be Kobe Bryant of the Lakers, Steph Curry of the Warriors, Keven Durant of Oklahoma City, Kawhi Leonard of San Antonio and Russell Westbrook of Oklahoma City.

The Eastern Conference starters will be Carmelo Anthony of the  Knicks, Paul George of Indiana, LeBron James of Cleveland, Kyle Lowry of Toronto and Dwyane Wade of Miami.

Bryant had the most votes of any player, tallying 1,891,614. Curry was next with 1,604,325 and then James with 1,089,206. They were only three with at least a million votes.




Home sweet home is not always the case for the L.A. Clippers

FILE - In this March 2, 2010,  file photo, Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer speaks in Santa Clara, Calif. Ballmer is officially the new owner of the Los Ang...

Steve Ballmer/Associated Press file photo by Paul Sakuma


Unless the Clippers were to find a way to get out of their lease at Staples Center, they will be tenants there through June 2024.

That’s not the best scenario for the Clippers, who are basically the third team in that building behind the L.A. Kings and Lakers, even though all three teams began playing in the building when it opened in 1999.

Take this past weekend. The Clippers had to play back-to-back day games against Charlotte and New Orleans on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. The Kings had the night game Saturday, the Lakers on Sunday.

If the Clippers had their own building, that Sunday game would never have been scheduled for during the day.

Coach Doc Rivers was asked before Sunday’s game if the scenario wants to make him talk to owner Steve Ballmer about the team getting its own building once the lease expires. Rivers balked at first.

“I’m not going to comment on that,” he said. Then he did.

“No, I don’t know,” he said. “I mean, obviously, every team would rather have their own building, but it’s not awful. But you would love to play the evening game tonight; I don’t mind back-to-back.

“But the smart thing would have been 12:30, 7:30. That would have been smart for us, but didn’t work out that way. I’m sure Steve thinks of things like that all the time.”

Unfortunately for the Clippers, they signed a 10-year extension on their Staples Center lease in January 2013, before Ballmer purchased the Clippers in May 2014.

The Clippers, Lakers and Kings work with Staples Center owner AEG, the NBA and the NHL for scheduling times and dates. The Clippers got the short end of the stick this past weekend.