Notebook: Clippers 99, Grizzlies 73



Posted Jan 14, 2013 11:52 PM

By Marlon W. Morgan, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Eric Bledsoe may not have put up Chris Paul-like numbers, but he ran the Los Angeles Clippers offense effectively in the absence of Paul, who was out with a bruised right knee cap. Bledsoe scored 14 points and had four assists, but controlled the tempo of the game as the Clippers held the Grizzlies to a season-low point total in a 99-73 victory Monday night at FedExForum. The Clippers, who improved to 29-9, also got 16 points each from Jamal Crawford and Matt Barnes. They now lead the season series, 2-0 against the Grizzlies, who were playing without forward Rudy Gay, who was attending his grandmother's funeral in Baltimore.

QUOTABLE: "It's hard to stop a team when you don't know who's going to be the focal point. Some nights we have some of our main guys scoring and some nights we have guys off our bench scoring. That makes us tough."
-- Clippers forward Blake Griffin.

THE STAT: The Clippers showed what the biggest difference between the two teams are -- their bench. Led by Crawford and Barnes, the Clippers got 54 points from their bench. Their bench entered the game second in the NBA in scoring at 41 ppg. Meanwhile, the Grizzlies bench only managed 26, 15 of which came in the fourth quarter when the game had long since been decided.

TURNING POINT: The Grizzlies held a 17-14 lead with less than four minutes left in the first quarter. From there, the Clippers closed out the quarter on an 11-2 run, then started the second quarter with nine unanswered points to build a 34-19 lead.

HOT: The Clippers continue to have the Grizzlies number. They have now won six of the last nine regular season meetings between the two teams, as well as winning their first round playoff series a year ago in seven games.

NOT: The Grizzlies started the game making five of their first eight shots. From there, they made just one of their next 15, including nine misses in a row, that allowed the Clippers to blow the game open early. They finished the night shooting 30.3 percent (27 of 89), a franchise-record low for a home game. The fourth quarter was the only period they scored at least 20 points, finishing with 21.

QUOTABLE II: "What got us beat was our lack of intensity, effort, competitiveness and not being able to finish the easy stuff around the basket. We throw the ball to a guy on the fast break, he misses a layup. We throw the ball to a guy in the post, he misses a layup. Those are the things that you can't coach. I just think that for me, that whole game summed up just that we weren't competing on a high level. They came in here and wanted to show us, and they did."
-- Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins.

NOTABLE: The Grizzlies have now lost two in a row after winning four straight. In those two losses, they have been outscored by an average of 25.5 points. ... The Clippers 26-point win was their eighth win of 20 or more points this season and sixth by at least 22 since Dec. 1. ... Clippers' coach Vinny Del Negro said Paul's playing status will be a game-time decision for their game Tuesday at Houston. For the Grizzlies, Gay is expected to join the team in San Antonio on Wednesday.

UP NEXT: For the Clippers, Tuesday @ Houston, Thursday @ Minnesota, Saturday vs. Washington. For the Grizzlies, Wednesday @ San Antonio, Friday vs. Sacramento, Saturday @ Chicago.