And that is how it's done.
The Clippers jumped out to an early 9-0 lead and never looked back. JJ Redick and Blake Griffin were on fire to start the game sinking most everything that they threw up. I must admit, when I heard Nicola Vucevic would miss the game I was looking at the Magic roster to find which unknown player was about to go off for a career night. Luckily, the Clips squashed all opposition the Magic could muster.
The blowout was predicated off of not only the offensive outburst put forth by Blake and JJ, but the overall team defense. Early on the rotations were crisp and DeAndre Jordan was a machine, blocking multiple shots and altering numerous others.
Despite the hot start by the Clips, the resounding thought in my head during the first quarter was - is Fournier serious with that haircut? I'm pretty sure the top-of-the-head pony died out with Steven Segal's career in the mid-90s.
The second quarter brought on a bit of intrigue. The first and for most was the question of whether we were seeing a worse FT shooter than DJ when Elfrid Payotn stepped up to the line. The second was the dismal performance by the Clipper bench that allowed the Magic to pull within 3. On a whole, the Clippers bench combined for 5 points of 2/10 shooting in the first half.
The other notable play in the 2nd quarter came on a Griffin drive to the hoop. As Blake penetrated the lane, Magic center, Kyle O'Quinn, went for a block. He wound back and then swung down for the block. His hand glanced off the ball and continued to careen off of Griffin's jaw. As the play went for review, I was certain it would be called a simple hard foul - at most a flagrant one. The Refs saw it differently and called O'Quinn for a Flagrant 2 - which necessitated his dismissal from the game.
Blake and JJ ended the first half with a combined 32 points off 13 for 17 shooting. Griffin also had 7 rebounds and 5 assists, seemingly poised for a triple double. That was not to be, however, as the Clips dominated the remainder of the game - which led to Blake taking up space on the bench for the majority of the second frame.
CP3 turned it on in the second half to carry the Clips to an absolute blowout, scoring 10 points in the period and continually embarrassing Victor Oladipo. The only real concern in the third was, could the starters stretch the lead to a wide enough margin that the bench wouldn't be able to blow it. Luckily, the starters did just that. As a result, the 4th quarter of the game was nothing more than a somewhat sloppy scrimmage.
All in all, the Clippers were not challenged in this game. One thing I really love about this season is that the Clippers are finally winning the games they are supposed to win - and in the fashion we expect.
As a final note, I have to say, it is infinitely more pleasurable to write a recap about the Clippers winning in a blow out and not the other way around.
The Clippers next game is this Saturday, December 6th, at STAPLES against the New Orleans Pelicans and the Unibrow.