After losing two games in a row the Los Angeles Clippers took on the unbeaten San Antonio Spurs last night at the Staples Center. It shouldn’t have been as easy as it looked, but the Clippers clearly flipped a switch. They ended up beating San Antonio 106-84, with every player contributing to the win from start to finish.
The Clippers got three double-double performances in this game from starters Chris Paul (10 points, 12 assists), Blake Griffin (22 points, 10 rebounds), and DeAndre Jordan (20 points, 11 rebounds.) It doesn’t happen often where you have three players record a double-double on the same night, but good things happen when you do.
Defense has been the Clippers concern early on this season and Jordan was the guy that set the tone on that end of the floor last night. He was cutting through the passing lanes for steals and blocking shots, finishing the game with four blocks and two steals. The Clippers quickly fed off of that energy and ended the game with 13 steals and eight blocks as a team. That energy also helped the Clippers out-rebound their opponent 46-29, which they failed to do during the first four games of the season.
By now the Clippers bench should be no secret to opposing teams. They have punished their opponents so far through the first four games of the season and last night was no different. However, this time it was Eric Bledsoe instead of Jamal Crawford leading the way. Bledsoe was contributing in all kinds of different ways off of the bench. He ended the game with 15 points, five assists, one rebound, one block, and one steal. (I can’t take it anymore. I have to see this guy be a starter somewhere right now, which is why I invented the hash tag #FreeBledsoe. Join the club.)
The Clippers also got double figure scoring from three other players, Matt Barnes (12 points), Crawford (10 points), and starter Willie Green (11 points.) Barnes played extremely well on both ends of the court, adding five rebounds, four assists, and three steals. It also shouldn’t go unnoticed that he looks to be having tons of fun throwing lobs to Griffin on the fast break. (Who would have thought that Barnes and Griffin would be the best connection in lob city right now? Your right, nobody would have thought that. )
After a performance like this one it’s almost safe to say that it would have been tough for any NBA team to beat the Clippers last night.
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