Blake Griffin briefly re-entered in the 4th quarter with the Clippers down 20 points to Golden State, putting in 4 quick points before leaving as Austin Rivers hit a pair of free throws cutting it to 15.
Was it just to end the odd Chris Kaman homage the Clippers have had going on all year (as the last team without a 30-point scorer in any game, before tonight)? Who knows.
Either way, they still haven’t broken the streak that really matters, as Golden State won their ninth straight against the Clippers. The 133-120 game is probably fairly representative of the margin of victory for the Clips, as they hung around, but not really for most of the game — before a late garbage time push led mostly by Austin Rivers cut it to 7 with a minute and a half left.
Quick threes by Durant and Klay Thompson put an end to that monkey business, leaving Doc Rivers probably regretting yet another one of his flubs as GM.
Not sure Clippers can finish this comeback without C.J. Wilcox.— Ben Bolch (@latbbolch) February 3, 2017
Other observations from this game:
— Blake Griffin was very good tonight on offense (as the Warriors were down Draymond Green, Zaza Pachulia, and David West), but along with the rest of the team struggled defensively.
— DeAndre Jordan was a big culprit on that end, looking disinterested and nonchalant most of the first half. The Warriors obliterated the Clippers on the offensive glass.
— L.A. didn’t help matter by being extremely sloppy with the ball, posting 7 turnovers in the first quarter (including on each of their first three possessions of the game). To beat the Warriors, you need to execute the things you can control well, and then hope for some luck. The Clippers failed in the first part of that equation yet again.
— Last year, the Clippers always came out with strong effort and intensity against Golden State, playing some of their best basketball in their first two meetings during an otherwise lackadaisical and terrible November. This year it’s been the opposite — slow starts, bad execution, and a deer-in-the-headlights look that the Clippers never really had in previous years.
The Clippers fall to 31-19, tied for 4th in the West with the Utah Jazz. They now embark on a five-game East road swing before heading into the All-Star Break.