Five Takeaways: Clippers Win Third Straight, 113-108 In Orlando
LOS ANGELES – The Clippers scored more than 110 points for the third straight game Wednesday night, and a third straight win followed.
Here are five quick takeaways as the Clippers (19-7) held on for a 113-108 win against the Magic (11-16).
1) Rivers returns, Mbah a Moute misses – Austin Rivers passed the tests necessary to fly after sustaining a concussion and missing Monday’s game, then passed the tests necessary to play Wednesday back near his hometown. Rivers also picked up the start, as Luc Mbah a Moute had to miss his first game of the year with a right AC sprain in his shoulder, suffered Monday against Portland. Mbah a Moute hopes to be back soon, but Wednesday was a tough one for him to miss against Orlando’s Aaron Gordon, who scored 33 points. But Jordan’s block on a long Gordon 3-point attempt, leading by five with 23 seconds left, helped seal the game and also put Jordan in the record books.
2) Jordan sets franchise record for blocks – That block on Gordon, Jordan’s third block of the game, gave Jordan 1,118 blocks for his career, making him the Clippers’ all-time leader in blocks. Jordan passed Benoit Benjamin for the honor. Jordan, who’s averaged at least 1.4 blocks every year since the 2010-11 season, finished with 22 points, 12 rebounds, three blocks and two assists in the win.
3) Home sweet home for Rivers with season high – What a turnaround of a week for Rivers, who couldn’t play Monday, then made the trip with the Clippers and got his high school jersey retired at Winter Park on Tuesday and played his best game of the year Wednesday night, dropping in a season-high and team-high 25 points and shooting lights out from behind the arc. Rivers matched a career high with seven 3-pointers, going 9-for-12 from the floor and 7-for-10 from behind the arc in a team-high 38 minutes.
4) DJ hack-fest – While Orlando got it going offensively in the third quarter with 36 points to tie the game heading to the fourth quarter, DeAndre Jordan did all he could to try to keep the Clippers ahead as the Magic sent him to the line time and time again. Jordan had only two free throw attempts in the first half, then finished with 18 after all the third-quarter hacking. Jordan took more free throws than the Clippers had shot attempts in the third quarter, but he went 11-for-16 from the line in the quarter, including a 10-for-14 stretch when Orlando sent him to the line on seven straight trips, and finished the night 12-for-18 from the line, tying a career high for made free throws.
5) 3-Point Shootout – The Clippers are a top-10 team in 3-pointers, but the Magic are in the middle of the pack. Wednesday night, that didn’t appear to matter. The Clippers knocked down 13 3-pointers, and the Magic stayed close on the Clippers’ tails all night knocking down 14, including four apiece for Gordon and former Clipper Jeff Green. And while Blake Griffin didn’t take any 3s, much of his work in going 9-for-14 from the floor with 23 points came on jumpers.
What’s Next? – The Clippers play Friday in Miami.