Game #44 | January 22, 2014
Time Warner Cable Arena | Charlotte, NC
“It was definitely strange, a strange game,” Griffin said. “There were times when it felt like we were up seven or eight [points] and I’d look up and we were tied. At the beginning of the second half we got [eight] stops in a row and looked up we were only up six. Then, I thought we just did a poor job down the stretch.”
Griffin, who had a game-high 27 points with seven rebounds and six assists, missed two chances to keep the Clippers in the game, including a put-back jumper along the baseline that could have tied it after Jamal Crawford missed a layup leaping around his defender.
The Clippers (29-15) knew the Bobcats, despite a 19-25 record, were one of the scrappiest teams in the league. And after failing to ever find a groove in a game that looked far different than their blowout victory three weeks ago at home, they found themselves on the losing end of a game in Charlotte for the first time in four seasons.
“We couldn’t shake them,” Clippers head coach Doc Rivers said. “They got off to a great start at the beginning of the game and it felt like we were always fighting back all game, which I liked. But there were a lot of little plays throughout the game that we didn’t make: loose balls, it just felt like they got all those.”
Crawford had 20 points and four assists, J.J. Redick scored 15 points and DeAndre Jordan had four points and 20 rebounds, securing 20 boards or more in his second straight game, becoming the first player in the NBA this season to do so.
But the Clippers let Charlotte hang around all night. They could never get their running game going against a Bobcats team that is among the league’s top 10 defenses, missed plenty of shots they usually make, could not capitalize on an early defensive spurt in the third quarter, and allowed 14 points off 14 miscues.
“We had opportunities,” Jared Dudley said. “But then there’d be turnovers, missed shots. You’re going to have that over an 82-game season. When you play well defensively you’re going to give yourself a chance.”
After Charlotte’s lead to ballooned to as large as seven early in the fourth quarter, a crowd that was practically non-existent through much of the night was finally in the game. The Clippers’ defense, though, helped them back in it and with 1:05 to go Crawford tied the game at 89.
After the teams alternated empty possessions Ramon Sessions air-balled a layup that Gerald Henderson fortuitously caught and dunked. Crawford missed a runner and Griffin missed the put back before Josh McRoberts was fouled under the basket. McRoberts made both free throws and Griffin missed another shot near the rim through contact, essentially ending any last gasp attempt for the Clippers after tying up Al Jefferson and losing the jump ball.
Jefferson, as he has been for the Bobcats of late without Kemba Walker (ankle) in the lineup, carried Charlotte down the stretch and finished 24 points and 10 rebounds. But the Clippers responded to Jefferson‘s baskets on two fourth-quarter possessions, including a 3-pointer from the left corner by Dudley, who came off the bench for the second game in a row, to bring the Clippers to within a point.
Dudley’s shot came with 2:36 remaining. The Clippers would only score twice more.
The Clippers are 2-2 on their seven-game Grammy road trip and 7-3 overall this season without Chris Paul, who was on the sideline after spending the previous three games in Los Angeles receiving treatment on his injured shoulder… The last Clippers player before Jordan to grab 20 or more rebounds in back-to-back games was Marcus Camby in 2009… The Clippers were 6-for-26 (23.1 percent) from 3-point range… Jannero Pargo scored 11 points off the bench, going 5-of-8 from the floor… It is the first time Griffin has lost to the Bobcats in his career… Olympian and former WNBA star Dawn Staley was in attendance… This was the Clippers’ final game against the Charlotte franchise using the moniker Bobcats. They will be called the Charlotte Hornets beginning in 2014-15… Antawn Jamison, who is from Charlotte, brought members of his alma mater Providence High School’s varsity and junior varsity basketball team to the game…
Clippers head coach Doc Rivers
(On tonight’s game)
“I thought they played well; we just could never shake them. They got off to a great start at the beginning, and it felt like we were always fighting back all game, which I liked. There were just a lot of little plays we didn’t make. “
(On the rhythm of the game)
“It was one of those games, either team really just couldn’t get into it. It never felt right. At the beginning of the third quarter I thought we had a chance. We had eight stops in a row, but only scored twice. We came out with the right energy but couldn’t get anything going.”
(On rookie Reggie Bullock)
“He is going to be a good player. He is coming off injury, and I wanted to play him tonight if we had a big lead. He is a great kid. He is learning and works hard and that is all you can ask. “
Clippers forward Jared Dudley
(On tonight’s game)
“We had our chances. They kept fighting every time we came back. We’d get a small lead and they would come back, so I have to give credit where credit is due. They made the big shots in the end and executed and we didn’t, so that’s the difference in the game.”
(On the team’s play tonight)
“I always give the team credit that deserves it and those guys deserve it. That being said, we got away from getting the ball down low to Blake (Griffin), but Jamal (Crawford) hit big shots and gave us a chance to win. It feels bad to lose, but we’ve got to put it behind us. We have three more games on this road trip, so hopefully we can go back home 3-0.”
Clippers guard Jamal Crawford
(On tonight’s game)
“It never felt like we were down that much. Then when we came back it felt like we were up big, but it would be a tie game. It was a weird game. The rhythm was never there.”
(On his mindset with the team being short-handed)
“Whatever Coach wants me to do to help turn this thing around, I’ll do it. If he wants me to play the one, I’ll do that. I will sacrifice some shots, no problem. Whatever he wants, I will do, because I’ve got faith in him and these guys. We’ll be alright, we just have to fight through this tough stretch.”
Bobcats center Al Jefferson
(On tonight’s win)
“It was a team win. We played team defense, we got stops when it was time to get stops, we had team rebounding and it was just a team victory. That’s what it’s going to take for us to win games, especially against good teams. This is one of the most balanced that we’ve played in the league. They’re top ten in offense and defense.”
(On Josh McRoberts)
“He’s a smart player on the offensive end, number one. He’s kind of like a point guard to be honest with you. He’s probably the best passer on the team. And then he’s one of those guys that you just want on the defensive end because he’s not afraid of anything. He’ll take on any match-up he has to take on, like a Blake Griffin tonight or LaMarcus Aldridge when we were in Portland. He’s not afraid to take those match-ups. He just brings a lot of energy and his IQ for the game is very high.”
Bobcats guard Gerald Henderson
(On closing out the game)
“We played some good defense coming down the stretch. That was the biggest key. The dunk that I had, that helped us, but having some pretty good possessions in a row and then rebounding was really good too. It was a good win for us against a good offensive team and a good defensive team too, so we’ll just learn from this one and keep going.”
(On the team’s mindset with Kemba Walker out)
“Everybody has come in ready. Coach (Clifford) has definitely emphasized that. Kemba averages 19 points, but we’re not going to get that from just one person. Everybody has to come in and I think guys know their roles, know their spots, and how they can help our team win. I think on both sides of the floor guys are really just playing how they know they can to help us win.”
- Doc Rivers Postgame - 1/22/14Doc Rivers addresses the media following the loss to Charlotte.
- Griffin Postgame - 1/22/14Blake Griffin discusses the loss to Charlotte.
- Dudley Postgame - 1/22/14Jared Dudley's postgame comments from Charlotte.
- Clippers vs. Bobcats: First halfBlake Griffin has 15 points at the half and the Clippers lead the Bobcats by one at the break.
- Pregame: Doc Rivers | 1/22/14Doc Rivers talks about who will start at small forward, Darren Collison's toe injury and more before tonight's game in Charlotte.
- Chris Paul Shootaround - 1/22/14Chris Paul speaks about injury and All-Star aspirations.
- LACtv Preview: Clippers at BobcatsThe Clippers continue their Grammy road trip Wednesday night in Charlotte.
- My Locker: Darren CollisonDarren Collison gives a tour of his locker, sponsored by AquaHydrate.
- Weekly Top 10: 1/20/2014The top ten Clippers plays of the week.
- Dunkfest In DetroitThe Clippers put on a dazzling dunk show vs the Pistons
- Dunk of the Night - DeAndre JordanDeAndre Jordan throws down a barrage of high-flying slams against the Pistons.
- Clippers vs. PistonsBlake Griffin scored 25 points and DeAndre Jordan had 16 points and 21 rebounds to lead the Clippers over the Pistons.
- Postgame: Doc Rivers | 1/20/2014Doc Rivers addresses the media following tonight's 112-103 victory over the Pistons.
- Postgame: Blake Griffin | 1/20/2014Blake Griffin addresses the media following tonight's 112-103 victory over the Pistons.
- Postgame: Jamal Crawford | 1/20/2014Jamal Crawford addresses the media following tonight's 112-103 victory over the Pistons.
- Clippers-Pistons Dunk-a-ThonThe Clippers and Pistons featured a plethora of dunks, 19 to be exact...check them all out right here!
- Clippers vs. Pistons: First halfBlake Griffin (21 points) and DeAndre Jordan (10 points, nine rebounds) are leading the Clippers over the Pistons at halftime.
- Collison to Jordan Alley-oopThe Clippers' Darren Collison finds DeAndre Jordan with a deep lob pass, which DJ finishes with a reverse jam.
- LACtv Preview: Clippers at PistonsThe Clippers road trip continues Monday afternoon in Detroit.
- Player Highlights: Darren CollisonSome of DC's best highlights so far this season.
|Behind-the-Scenes | Playoff Practice | 4/18/2014 April 18, 2014||Best Moments: Clippers vs. Warriors | 2013-14 April 17, 2014||Best Moments from the 2013-14 Season April 17, 2014||Clippers vs. Trail Blazers | 4/16/2014 April 16, 2014|
|Celebrities at Clippers Games | 2013-14 April 16, 2014||In-Game Action: Clippers vs. Nuggets - 4/15/14 April 16, 2014|
By: Eric Patten | Follow @EricPatten
The middle game of the Grammy road trip tips off in Charlotte Wednesday and the Clippers have a chance to improve to 3-1 on the seven-game jaunt for the first time in team history. They are coming off an electrifying victory in Detroit Monday afternoon that included a dozen dunks and a pair of 4-point plays by J.J. Redick. The Clippers (29-14) have won six of their last seven and eight of their last 10. They have also won six in a row of the Bobcats (18-25), who enter the game having alternated wins and losses in their last six games.
Darren Collison vs. Ramon Sessions
Both are replacing heavily-relied upon starters in Chris Paul and Kemba Walker, and have had a degree of success. In nine games without Paul this season, the Clippers are 7-2, including winning six of eight since he went down with a shoulder injury on Jan. 3. Collison is averaging 13.6 points and 6.6 assists in that time. Likewise, in two games without Walker, Sessions has helped lead the Bobcats to a win against the Raptors and took the Heat to overtime.
- In the last 18 games, Blake Griffin is averaging the fifth most points in the NBA (25.9). He’s had at least 24 points in eight of the last 13 games, including 31 versus Charlotte on Jan. 1. That’s likely to continue. He’s scored at least that many points in three of his six career games against the Bobcats (but never in Charlotte).
- The Clippers are trying to start 3-1 on the Grammy trip for only the third time in franchise history. They did so in 2005-06 and again in 2011-12.
- Paul joined the Clippers in Charlotte after staying in Los Angeles for treatment on his shoulder. This is the second time (first as a Clipper) that Paul has missed playing a game in his home state of North Carolina.
- Al Jefferson has scored 20 points or more in six consecutive games. If he scores 20 against the Clippers it will be the third longest streak of 20-plus games in Bobcats history. He struggled in his first game against the Clippers on Jan. 1, scoring 14 points in 30 minutes. Two weeks after that game his scoring binge began.
- Charlotte is seventh in the league in defensive efficiency (101.0), actually one tenth of a point per 100 possessions better than the Clippers. However, the Clippers average 107.2 points per 100 possessions on offense, compared to Charlotte’s 98.0 (27th).
- Despite their 25 losses the Bobcats have a tendency to be involved in close games. They are 10-10 in games decided by six points or less (tied for the most in the NBA), including seven wins at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The Clippers are 13-5 all-time against the Bobcats, including three wins by 20 points or more… The Bobcats are 10-12 at home… Charlotte’s Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (hand) did not play in the first matchup against the Clippers, but will start Wednesday… Ryan Hollins, Byron Mullens and Jared Dudley all played for the Bobcats…
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Doc Rivers: “"Matt (Barnes) was good in [the starting] unit because he gives us so much defensive energy. Really, I was [starting him] more because I am trying to create, without Chris, a second unit that can create offense."
Blake Griffin: "[Playing on the road] is obviously tougher than having a seven-game home stand. Every team has to play tough on the road and we got off to a good start in Detroit. You can't complain, you just have to go out and play."
LAC: Chris Paul (shoulder) remains out.
CHA: Kemba Walker (ankle), Jeffrey Taylor (Achilles), Brendan Haywood (foot) are out.
LAST TIME OUT