This year the Los Angeles Clippers are more mature, have more talent and are looking to a big push towards the NBA Finals. On Saturday night, the Clippers beat the Houston Rockets 118-107, moving them a step closer towards the ultimate goal.
Early in the game, Blake Griffin left with back spasms and Chris Paul turned Houston’s hardwood into his personal stage for the Chris Paul Show. Paul had 30 points, 12 assists, five rebounds and three steals. For a while it looked like the Rockets were in control of the game, but Paul conducted two major comebacks to give the Clippers the lead. His game has grown substantially since last season and I guarantee he will be making a lot of playoff noise.
On Saturday, Paul received help from DeAndre Jordan and Jamal Crawford. Together, both players provided 42 points and 15 rebounds. During the game, Doc Rivers sent Glen Davis to the locker room for disciplinary reasons. With Davis and Griffin out, Paul and company really stepped it up.
Los Angeles is still waiting on who it will face in its first round matchup. Without a doubt, the Clippers are looking like serious contenders in the Western Conference. During the offseason, the team got rid of Vinny Del Negro and replaced him with head coach Doc Rivers. His leadership and experience will hopefully provide the Clippers with what they have been missing because the talent is there.
The Clippers are in third place and if the playoffs started tomorrow, the team would face the sixth seed Golden State Warriors. Los Angeles still has other potential playoff match ups, as the final seeding is being decided. Though, the Warriors and Clippers would be one of the most entertaining first round match ups of the 2014 playoffs.