Notebook: Clippers 101, 76ers 72



Posted Mar 21, 2013 2:02 AM

Sean Ceglinsky, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: This one was not close, unfortunately for Chris Paul and the Clippers. Collectively, they had little or no trouble with the Sixers on Wednesday night en route to a 101-72 victory at Staples Center. Had the game been a bit more competitive, Paul's stats would have been far more impressive. With the outcome of the game no longer in doubt, he sat out most of fourth quarter and finished with 19 points, nine assists, six rebounds and five steals in less than 32 minutes of action.

QUOTABLE: "My college coach used to always tell me that it's a team game played by individuals, so I still need to do my part."
-- Chris Paul

THE STAT: The Sixers shot 36.7 percent from the field and some of their ineffectiveness had to do with the sometimes stifling defense of the Clippers. Most of the blame, however, can be attributed to poor shot selection. Struggling from beyond the three-point arc certainly did not help matters as the Sixers finished 6-for-20 from downtown. If not for Evan Turner, who was 2-for-2 from long distance, the Sixers would have not finished with a 30 percent clip from three-point land.

TURNING POINT: Difficult to imagine a run early in the game having a lasting impact. It happened, however. In the first quarter after the Sixers scored the game's first eight points. The Clippers responded, Caron Butler in particular. He dunked over Spencer Hawes and was fouled in the process. After missing the free throw, the ball ended up in the hands of Butler, who converted a layup. The four-point swing helped the Clippers eventually tie the score, 20-20, at the end of first quarter and they never trailed the rest of the way. Talk about a momentum-changing sequence.

HOT: The Clippers reserves played well when given the opportunity. Led by Ryan Hollins this time around, the unit opened up the second quarter with an 11-1 run. After four points from Hollins, next thing the Sixers know a tie game at the end of the first quarter turned into a double-digit deficit, 10 points, with 8:14 left in the first half of play.

NOT: Los Angeles native Jrue Holiday struggled from start to finish. The North Hollywood (Calif.) Campbell Hall High graduate and UCLA product finished 1-for-8 from the field with two points and four turnovers in 33 minutes. Holiday might have known it was going to be a long game after going 1-for-4 from the field in the first half. Holiday had as many turnovers (two) as he did points (two) in his 20-plus minutes of action before the break.

QUOTABLE II: "Overall, I thought our activity was better, our intensity was better from everybody."
-- Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro

GOOD MOVE: With a chance to lead a fast break in the second quarter, Blake Griffin made the most of his opportunity. He dribbled up the court, through a pair of defenders, and somehow caught DeAndre Jordan out of the corner of his eye as the big man filled the left lane. Griffin followed with a lob pass over his right shoulder, Jordan skied to grab the ball and then completed the alley-oop with a thunderous dunk to give the Clippers a 40-34 lead with 3:05 remaining in the first half.

BAD MOVE: The Sixers needed to find a way to get the ball into hands of Hawes more often. At the very least, do so for those who have him on their roster in fantasy basketball. All kidding aside, when Hawes touched the ball, good things happened. He nearly had a triple double and finished with 16 points, seven rebounds and seven assists. He also added four blocked shots and pair of steals.

NOTABLE: The Clippers played without Eric Bledsoe (sore left calf), Chauncey Billups (strained right groin) and Rony Turiaf (sore right knee)... Jamal Crawford celebrated his 33rd birthday with 12 points... Lamar Odom's wife Khloe Kardashian sat courtside with her stepfather and Olympic gold medalist Bruce Jenner... Sixers coach Doug Collins said Andrew Bynum (bilateral arthroscopic knee surgery) will start physical therapy on Friday. He is out for the season... One-time Clipper Nick Young did not play in the first three quarters for the Sixers. After the cheers from the crowd, he entered the game in the fourth quarter and scored six points in nine minutes...

UP NEXT: For the Clippers, Saturday vs. Brooklyn, March 26 @ Dallas, March 27 @ New Orleans. For the Sixers, Thursday @ Denver, Sunday @ Sacramento, March 25 @ Portland.