GAMEDAY REPORT: CLIPPERS VS. WARRIORS - 1/30/14
Game #49 | January 30, 2014
Oracle Arena | Oakland, CA
OAKLAND – Playing for the ninth time in 13 days, the road finally caught up to the Clippers.
They looked sluggish and mistake prone and in the face of a hostile Oracle Arena crowd mustered little more than a small comeback attempt late in the first half before succumbing to the Warriors, 111-92, on Thursday night, snapping a four-game winning streak.
It was the second night of a back-to-back and ninth game in what Clippers head coach Doc Rivers termed a nine-game road trip despite a stop at Staples Center Wednesday against the Wizards.
After jumping on Washington in the first half a night earlier, the Clippers (33-16) never led against the Warriors (28-19) and trailed by as many as 25.
“We just didn’t have it,” Rivers said. “We had nothing. You could just see it. They were blowing by us. We were late on everything defensively tonight. It’s just one of those nights.”
Darren Collison scored a season-high 22 points with five assists. Blake Griffin had a game-high 27 points. And DeAndre Jordan corralled 20 rebounds.
But the Clippers offered little resistance. Golden State made 19 of its first 31 shots, had 28 points in the paint and held a 16-9 rebounding edge and less than 16 minutes into the game held a 48-29 lead.
Things proceeded accordingly from there.
“The energy was bad,” Griffin said. “It didn’t ever really feel like I had that wind or that second gear or that second level.
“We tried to make a push there, but it was a little too late.”
Even after the Clippers climbed back by taking advantage of five second-quarter turnovers by the Warriors and finally stringing multiple stops together, it never felt as though they had enough legs to keep it up.
Griffin kept the Clippers’ afloat with 20 first-half points, including an array of jumpers and a requisite alley-oop on a 2-on-1 fast break, and after an errant pass by Stephen Curry led to a 3-pointer in transition by J.J. Redick, the Clippers were within seven points. They closed to as close as 62-56 after Jordan went 1-for-4 on consecutive trips to the line and Andrew Bogut tipped in a miss by David Lee with 19 seconds remaining in the half to make it, 64-56.
“It seemed like the second quarter was the only time we had a little bit of energy as a group,” said Jamal Crawford, who scored nine points, snapping a streak of eight consecutive games with at least 19 points off the bench. “And it’s tough to win when you play like that.”
The game lacked the theatrics from the previous two meetings between the Clippers and Warriors when ejections, technical fouls and high drama ruled the day. On Thursday, likely due in part to the Warriors’ recent struggles, losing six of their last 10, and the Clippers’ lengthy stretch away from home, none of that existed.
“I don’t think there was a chance for chippiness tonight,” Rivers said.
The Warriors outscored the Clippers, 26-11, in the third quarter. It was the fewest points in any quarter this season for L.A. and somewhat summed up the second half, or the night as a whole. The Clippers went a franchise-low 1-for-15 from the field and were out-rebounded 20-6.
“It’s been a grueling couple of weeks for us with what we’ve had going on,” Matt Barnes said. “With games like this, we’ve got to find a way to bring it. We made a few spurts, but nothing really to cement a lead or to make a push to get the lead.”
The Clippers have lost five in a row at Oracle Arena… Jordan has at least 10 rebounds in 26 consecutive games… Lee went 10-for-15 with 22 points… Lee had 11 rebounds and Bogut had 17, helping Golden State to a 53-34 advantage on the boards… Griffin has scored 25 points or more in five of his last six games… The Clippers lost for just the second time when scoring at least 20 fast-break points. They had 26… Golden State had 66 points in the paint… The Clippers and Warriors next play on Mar. 12 at Staples Center…
Clippers head coach Doc Rivers
On tonight being a tough game:
“It was a tough game coming into it; we knew that. I told our coaches before last night’s game that if we can win one of these two I’d be very happy. Obviously you wanted to win them both but give them credit, they played hard and all that stuff. We just didn’t have it; we had nothing. You could just see it. They were going by us, we were late on everything defensively tonight and it’s just one of those nights.”
On missing shots:
“We couldn’t make a shot. Some of them were open, some of them give them great defense, got to the basket. It was one of those nights; bad night for us, good night for Golden State.”
On current stretch of games:
“I don’t think this whole thing stops until after the Denver game. We’ve got two games off after that I think. It is what it is. At the end of the day everybody goes through something like this at some point and I swear everybody plays 82. We’re doing well through it; we’ve lost one game, this one. Now we’ve got to try to get our legs back in time for the next game.”
Clippers guard Jamal Crawford
On having a setback game:
“It’s one of those nights. I think we definitely haven’t had this type of game in a while; maybe since Indiana or maybe a little before that, but it’s been a little while before we had a game like this. They played well tonight, tip your hat to them. We had a little setback but we’ll be fine.”
On moving forward to Saturday’s game against Utah:
“It won’t be easy but we’ll get home, get some rest, regroup and get back on our horse.”
Clippers forward Matt Barnes
On not responding to the challenge tonight:
“It was one of those nights. Give them a lot of credit. This is a tough place to come into. I think they’re in second place behind us in the Pacific Division so we knew we were coming into a hostile environment and we didn’t respond as a team.”
On starting slow defensively:
“From the beginning we were a step slow on the defensive end. I think that’s where all our troubles start because we’re going to be able to score offensively. We were a step slow, gave them a lot of confidence and in here you definitely can’t give a team like that confidence, and they took advantage of it.”
Clippers forward Blake Griffin
On fatigue and lack of energy:
“The energy was bad. I was talking to some guys after the game, didn’t really feel like I ever had that wind or that second gear, second level. Everybody has to play games like this; coming off a seven-game road trip, go home, fly here, back-to-back. It’s tough but everybody has to do it and we just didn’t have it tonight. They played better than us.”
On playing the Warriors:
“It’s a game we want to win and it’s a game we feel like we should win. We still get another game with them so this isn’t it.”
On trying to make a fourth quarter comeback:
“We always feel like we have a chance. I think we were down 15 with like seven minutes left. We’ve been down by more than that and come back from that so yeah we tried to make a push there but it was a little too late.”
On stepping up in the absence of Chris Paul:
“Yeah I need to be a leader. I need to step up. Chris is a big part of our team and when he’s gone it obviously leaves a big gap. We’re just trying to fill that, not trying to replace him or do what he does, but do it my own way.”
Warriors head coach Mark Jackson
On Andrew Bogut guarding Blake Griffin:
“We’ve done that before. He’s done a good job because Blake Griffin is a heck of basketball player. He can score against bigger, smaller – doesn’t matter. He’s playing at an extremely high level. I thought Bogs (Andrew Bogut) did a great job of making him work and forcing him to beat us on our terms.”
On why he had David Lee guard Blake Griffin for stretches:
“Well (Andrew) Bogut had five fouls. I wasn’t going to hand deliver them Bogs (Andrew Bogut) with five fouls. If David Lee picked up five fouls I would’ve put Andrew Bogut back on him. It was the right thing to do. (Andrew) Bogut did a good job defending him and then when David (Lee) was guarding him he battled and did an outstanding job. Overall our defense was crisp, effective and on point. Our rotations and with keeping them off balance - it was all pretty impressive.”
On what he learned about Harrison Barnes tonight:
“Nothing I don’t already know. He’s a very good basketball player and the future is very bright for him. I know he’s going to figure it out. I believe in him and I trust him. He works too hard to not be successful. The thing I liked about it him tonight was that he rebounded the basketball, eight rebounds. That’s how you get involved. He was engaged, aggressive and gave us the punch off the bench that we needed.”
By: Eric Patten | Follow @EricPatten
When the Clippers play the Warriors for the third time this season, and final time at Orcale Arena, Thursday the game will be called a lot of things: rivalry, grudge match, battle for the division, etc. In the hours leading up to the nationally televised tilt in Oakland, both teams have been low key in terms of what the game ultimately means. The Warriors (29-19) are five games back in the Pacific and after falling by three to Wizards at home on Tuesday have slipped to seventh in the West. They are just 5-10 in 15 games against teams among the West’s top eight, including splitting the season series so far with the Clippers (33-15).
L.A. arrives in the Bay Area on the heels of a seven-point win over the Wizards on Wednesday, their fourth win a row. It is the fifth time this season they have won at least four consecutive games. In their previous trip to Oracle Arena, they were on a five-game winning streak and lost 105-103 in a controversial finish that included the ejection of Blake Griffin in the fourth quarter for a technical foul that was later rescinded by the league.
NOTEWORTHY MATCHUP: GRIFFIN VS. LEE
Griffin’s a four-time All-Star, while Lee is hopeful to receive a third big when the league announces its reserves on TNT Thursday prior to the game. Even though they are aesthetically contrasting Griffin’s and Lee’s numbers are extraordinarily comparable. They average an identical number of rebounds (9.8 per game), are among the top four in points in the paint and have both put up more than 140 double-doubles since 2010-11.
- The Clippers are 4-6 in the Chris Paul era against the Warriors, but are 4-1 when they score at least 104 points. It is something that has held true all season. No matter who the Clippers are playing, home or away, they are 25-1 when they reach the 104-point mark.
- Golden State owns the lowest scoring bench in the NBA at 23.0 points per game. On the contrary, the Clippers reserves, despite playing without Darren Collison off the bench due to Chris Paul’s injury, are No. 16, scoring 31.6 points per game. Much of that is due to Jamal Crawford, who is averaging 18.1 per game himself, including topping 19 points off the bench in each of the last eight games.
- J.J. Redick is in the league’s top 10 in first-quarter scoring. However, lately he has done his damage late. He scored 16 points in the second half against Toronto on Jan. 25 and had a dozen points in the fourth quarter on Wednesday. The Warriors have not seen Redick in the Clippers’ lineup since Oct. 31. Redick was out with a fractured hand/torn ligament in his right wrist on Christmas.
- Second-year forward Harrison Barnes entered the season as one of the leading candidates for Sixth Man of the Year, but he’s averaging just 7.8 points and 3.4 rebounds in his role as a reserve. He has only faced the Clippers once this season, coming off the bench to score 14 points on Dec. 25, going 3-for-13 from the field.
- Since their 10-game winning streak, the Warriors have allowed over 10 points and seven rebounds more per game. Opponents are averaging 103.9 points per game in the last nine games, compared to 91.8 when they won 10 in a row between the end of December and early January. Their 105-103 win over the Clippers was the third win in that stretch.
- Golden State is second in the NBA in 3-point makes as well as second in 3-point percentage (38.5 percent). They also boast the top two in 3-pointers made in Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. The “Splash Brothers” are two of only three players with at least 130 made threes. The Clippers held them both in check from distance in the Dec. 25 meeting, but Curry nailed a key 3-pointer in the fourth quarter after getting free at the top of the key. L.A. owns the No. 1 3-point defense in the NBA, including holding Washington to 3-for-22 (13.6 percent) on Wednesday.
The Clippers and Warriors have three players with the matching family names, although they are all unrelated: Willie Green and Draymond Green, Matt Barnes and Harrison Barnes, and Jamal Crawford and Jordan Crawford… Golden State is 3-6 in nine games since the final game of their 10-game winning streak… The Clippers are 18-7 against the Western Conference, second best in the West… They own a season-long three-game road winning streak… Golden State is 22-9 with their full squad of starters intact. However, they are 1-1 with that group against the Clippers… The Warriors have sold out 59 consecutive games, paling in comparison to the Clippers’ 116-game sellout streak… DeAndre Jordan will move into sole possession of No. 4 on the Clippers’ all-time list of consecutive games played…
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Doc Rivers: “Composure in any big game, not just that game, is important. And I actually thought we held our composure and got penalized. But it doesn’t matter. I told our guys that after the game. We wanted Blake to be in that game, but he got thrown out. We’ve still got to find a way to win.”
Darren Collison: “[Chris Paul] has always been helpful; he’s always been supportive. Chris, if he’s not playing, he’s always going to give his two cents and try to find out ways to help the team even when he’s not playing. That’s why he’s one of the best players in the world; because he understands the game. Anytime he talks, everybody listens. He’s the leader of the team.”
LAC: Chris Paul (shoulder) remains out. Antawn Jamison, who missed Wednesday’s game against the Wizards with a viral illness, traveled with the team to Golden State and is expected to play.
GSW: Jermaine O’Neal (wrist), Nemanja Nedovic (hamstring) and Festus Ezeli (knee) are out.
REGULAR SEASON SERIES HISTORY
Road Streak: Lost 3
Largest Margin of Victory:
LAST TIME OUT