Blake Griffin scored 32 points Friday night at Denver/Photo Courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com
The Clippers had three chances to tie the game with the final seconds winding down Friday night at Denver, but missed 3-point basket attempts by Jamal Crawford, J.J. Redick and Chris Paul resulted in the Clippers losing 109-106 to the Nuggets at Pepsi Center.
The Clippers (18-8) overcame a 16-point halftime deficit of 59-43 to lead 74-71 after three quarters.
Blake Griffin led the Clippers with 32 points on 9 of 20 shooting. He also grabbed 12 rebounds. Chris Paul scored 17 points with 15 assists, Crawford scored 20 off the bench, Matt Barnes had 16 points and DeAndre Jordan scored 11 and had 14 rebounds with two blocked shots.
The Clippers shot 45.9 percent from the field, but just 16.7 percent (3 of 18) from 3-point range.
Denver (11-15) received 20 points off the bench from Nate Robinson, 16 from Wilson Chandler and 14 points and seven rebounds from Kenneth Faried. Ty Lawson doled out 14 assists to go with his 10 points.
Years ago no one cared much about the Clippers, whether it be fans or other NBA teams and players. But the Clippers (48-21) are serious contenders these days, meaning they are under much more scrutiny. They have become a team others like to beat.
Such was the case Monday when the Clippers ventured to Denver to try and extend an 11-game winning streak. But just like last season, when the host Nuggets snapped the Clippers’ 17-game winning streak, they did it again with a 110-100 victory at Pepsi Center.
Ty Lawson, the Nuggets’ point guard, had an interesting thought for an ESPN.com reporter after the game.
“Players like to get up for this team,” said Lawson, who scored 19 points. “The energy in the building gets us going.”
According to ESPN.com, it was the fourth time in NBA history a team has halted the same opponent’s double-digit winning streak in back-to-back campaigns. The most recent before Monday was the Spurs ending 11-game Suns winning streaks in the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons.
By now Clippers fans might rather refer to them as the “Dastardly” Denver Nuggets.
The Nuggets on Monday defeated the visiting Clippers 110-100 to snap an 11-game Clippers winning streak. On New Years Day 2013, the Nuggets halted the Clippers’ 17-game winning streak with a 92-78 victory.
This time it was a 14-2 run down the stretch that fueled Denver to victory. Chris Paul led the Clippers (48-21) with 29 points, Blake Griffin had 26 points and 12 rebounds.
Ty Lawson led the Nuggets (30-37) with 19 points.