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.