Paul George began his career in the Bankers Life Fieldhouse, and he still looks supremely comfortable in that building.
PG taking off! pic.twitter.com/A5wBLpnwpI— Mo Dakhil (@MoDakhil_NBA) April 14, 2021
George scored at least 30 points for the fourth consecutive game, tied for the second-longest streak of his career, finishing with 36 and leading the Clippers to an 126-115 win. George’s passing was on point too, as he had eight assists as the lead ball-handler, including multiple lobs and a beautiful look-away dime to Patrick Patterson.
L.A.’s starters had some difficulty getting things going, understandable with Kawhi Leonard sitting out in addition to Patrick Beverley and Serge Ibaka. But the second unit created separation whenever they came in, as Terance Mann, Rajon Rondo, Nicolas Batum, and Patterson all had double-digit positive margins in plus-minus.
Mann delighted with his athleticism and his continued excellence on corner threes. He and George have a burgeoning lob connection that was tremendous fun to watch.
Paul George with the alley, Terance Mann with the oop. pic.twitter.com/437SsQGzBt— Justin Russo (@FlyByKnite) April 14, 2021
Rondo made some passes that were so slick they required a second look to appreciate. In perfect Rondo fashion, he didn’t make a single field goal but still juiced the offense with his five assists, six rebounds, and two steals. He also put pressure on the rim and earned four three-throw attempts in the process.
Batum continues his assault on opposing players in transition, as he added more chasedown blocks to his ledger. He tied a career-high with five blocks, a true force in help defense. His fellow backup frontcourt mate Patterson was another gap filler who just made smart plays on offense.
The one other starter who was able to make an impact was Marcus Morris Sr. The Pacers didn’t really have a true power forward available and thus were too small small to stop Morris in the paint. Morris followed up his 33-point outing Sunday with 22 Tuesday as the second-leading scorer for the Clippers.
Ty Lue may not have been happy with the overall defensive mindset, but to get a win in a tough road environment is no small feat. That’s six in a row heading into Detroit Wednesday.