The Los Angeles Clippers (35-18) put an end to the Phoenix Suns’ (36-15) 7 game win streak last night by defeating them 113-103 at Staples Center. The Clippers were led by a great game from Paul George. He helped the Clippers get out to an early lead. LAC ended the first quarter up 27-23. Things started to slip in the second as the Suns seemed to be unable to miss a shot. They were able to take a lead going into the second half. The Suns pounded the ball down low as their offense was run through their center DeAndre Ayton. He went 9 of 11 from the field for the game for his 18 points.
It was the Clippers’ terrific night from the 3 point line as a team. They made 18 of 37 from there, that was able to keep them in the game. The Suns however were on the second night of a back-to-back after a hard fought overtime victory against the NBA leading Utah Jazz. This being so, they ran out of gas in the second half. Things got a little testy in the final quarter. Patrick Beverley and Marcus Morris Jr. were both ejected. Despite that the Clippers were able to ride home to their 3rd win a row.
STAR OF THE GAME
For the second game in a row Paul George with his 33 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. PG13 looked good from the start of the game and carried the team to this win. He did get some help from his costar Kawhi Leonard who also had a good game with his 27 points. However, it was George who kept LAC in the game throughout by making 7 out of 9 3 point shots. Paul was quoted as saying his lingering foot injury would be something that would probably continue to bother him for the remainder of the year.
Last night it did not look like it was bothering him all that much. He looked like his usual silky smooth self. This is the Paul George that I want to see. He got into it with Devin Booker in their previous matchup. George looked like last night he was trying to prove that he is the better player. He didn’t have to prove that to me, but he seems to have to everyone else; as it was he who had the better game and who’s team came out on top.
I do not have any concerns after this game. They were able to defeat one of the better teams in the league, and gain a game on them in the standings. They have addressed their most glaring need by acquiring a true playmaking point guard in Rajon Rondo. The team is starting to get healthy. If they can just continue to gel together as a team, then the Clippers should be able to exorcise the demons of seasons past. They just need to keep their heads on straight. Something they didn’t do as 2 of their players were ejected late in the game.
It did not cost them anything but in their bank account last night, but it could in the future. The Suns are led by Chris Paul who has a history of getting under people’s skin. Then there is Devin Booker, who is a testy little shit. These two teams definitely do not like each other. Things should get interesting if they were to meet in the playoffs. The Clippers need to learn to keep their tempers in check if that were to happen.
Rajon Rondo with his 15 points and 9 assists off the bench. After Pat Bev’s ejection, and Reggie Jackson got poked in the eye, Rondo got some extended playing time. This proved to be beneficial to him, as he looked much better than his previous first couple of games with his new team. He was making good decisions, and seemed to have a handle on the Clippers’ offensive scheme. If he can build on this good game, the Clips are going to be nigh unstoppable going forward.
I have been on the record for saying that I do not like Rondo – I have said his smug arrogance rubs me the wrong way- but if he can help lead my favorite team to the promised land, all will be forgiven. He will go from being one of the players I hated most, to being one of my favorite players ever. I know my team well, and his leadership, ability to step up his game in the clutch, and championship swagger are the missing pieces to the Clippers’ puzzle.
Vs Houston Rockets Friday, April 9th at 7:30PM Pacific
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THE CLIPPERS BLOT OUT THE SUNS THE CLIPPERS BLOT OUT THE SUNS THE CLIPPERS BLOT OUT THE SUNS