L.A. Clippers 94, Chicago 90
CHICAGO, March 8 (Ticker) -- Michael Olowokandi
kept the Los Angeles Clippers in it until Quentin Richardson
was able to win it.
Olowokandi scored a career-high 30 points and Richardson had seven of his 16 in the final 90 seconds as the Clippers edged the Chicago Bulls 94-90 Friday.
The 7-foot Olowokandi had perhaps the best game of his four-year NBA career. The top overall pick in the 1998 draft made
13-of-23 shots and pulled down 16 rebounds as he overwhelmed Bulls teenage rookie center Eddy Curry and backup Dalibor Bagaric.
NBA TV highlights from Clippers-Bulls:
Michael Olowokandi goes up for the ferocious dunk.
"Michael is developing into a guy you can go to in the low post," Clippers coach Alvin Gentry said. "He's a center and
there's not a lot of those left in the league."
"What I told the guys is that if we stop him early, they won't go back to him," Bulls coach Bill Cartwright said. "There it is."
Olowokandi's free throw gave the Clippers an 84-82 lead with 2:51 to play and Richardson took over from there. He made a
foul shot with 1:28 left and added a soaring layup 21 seconds later to make it 87-82.
In the final 22 seconds, Richardson made four more free throws to offset a 3-pointer by Jalen Rose.
"That's the exact situation I want to be in," Richardson said. "I want to knock down shots to win the game. ... I want the ball in my hands to carry the team to a win."
"Quentin also did a good job tonight," Gentry said. "He took the ball to the basket and then stepped up to the line and hit his free throws. I'll be disappointed if he's not the Sixth Man of the Year at the end of the season."
Jeff McInnis scored 17 points and Elton Brand added 15 and 10 in his return to Chicago. The top overall pick
in the 1999 draft, Brand played his first two seasons with the Bulls before being traded last June for the rights to teenage center Tyson Chandler.
"It was very nice to come back. It was even nicer to get the victory," Brand said. "They were in the game just like we were last year in every game up until the end. You would play hard all the way, but you just couldn't get the win."
The Clippers won for the fourth time in the last five games and improved to 1-1 on a four-game road trip. They are 10-21 on the road.
"It's a road win," Gentry said. "Anytime you can get one of those, it's a good win."
Chandler sat out with a hyperextended left pinky. Rose and rookie Trenton Hassell scored 21 points apiece for the Bulls,
who have lost four straight games.
"It's difficult down the stretch," Rose said. "We have to start doing the little things when the game is on the line."
Olowokandi scored 16 points in the first half, but the Bulls held a 44-42 lead. He added seven in the third quarter, which ended in a 68-68 tie.
McInnis threw an alley-oop pass to Darius Miles, who dunked to give the Clippers the lead for good at 79-78 with 5:13 to play. Olowokandi followed with a layup 33 seconds later.
Miles scored 11 points for the Clippers, who shot 47 percent (37-of-79) and made 18-of-25 free throws. Curry had 13 points and eight rebounds for the Bulls, who also shot 47 percent (41-of-88) but made just 5-of-9 from the line.