Five Takeaways: Clippers Snap Skid With 109-98 Win Vs. Suns
LOS ANGELES – The Clippers (23-14) snapped a six-game losing skid, holding off a late Suns (10-25) surge after their 19-point lead dwindled down to six in the final minutes.
Here are five quick takeaways from the Clippers’ 109-98 win.
1) Clippers start small – Even with Chris Paul out for the sixth time in the Clippers’ last seven games, they still went small with a three-guard lineup Monday against the Suns. Austin Rivers and Raymond Felton joined J.J. Redick, Luc Mbah a Moute and DeAndre Jordan in the starting lineup. It was the first time the Clippers used the lineup this season and the sixth different starting lineup in the last six games, and it worked, with the guards attacking the paint more often than they had in recent games.
2) Skid snapped – After their loss to Oklahoma City, the Clippers talked about a lot of things that need to happen. They said they needed to get more stops. They said they needed to play harder. They said they needed to show more fight and to play more for each other. They said they needed to get back defensively and do better in transition. More than anything, the Clippers just needed a win after losing six straight games for the first time since February 2010, and they got that done in their first game of 2017 by spreading the scoring effort. Eight different Clippers finished the night with at least nine points.
3) Crawford bounces back– Jamal Crawford had scored 20-plus points in three straight games when all of a sudden three off nights followed, with Crawford entering Monday coming off three straight single-digit scoring games including a scoreless night on just four shots in Oklahoma City. He bounced back in a major way Monday, finishing with 18 points and seven rebounds while also making the right passes on his way to five assists.
4) Turnovers/fast breaks still issues – After committing 15 turnovers in back-to-back games, it didn’t get better in that regard Monday. The Clippers committed 20 turnovers, their most since committing that many against Dallas in the first of their recent six straight losses. The Clippers also had more problems slowing their opponent in transition, with the Suns scoring 28 fast-break points after getting outscored by 73 points in transition their last three games entering the night. But the Clippers mitigated their issues in transition by holding the Suns to 38.2 percent shooting and a 2-for-15 mark from behind the arc.
5) Redick gets Clippers going early – It was all J.J. Redick to start the night for the Clippers, as the guard posted nine points before five minutes had passed to start the game. At the time, he had more points than the Suns. Redick finished the night with a team-high 22 points, including a late 3-pointer to help put the game away.
What’s Next? – The Clippers host the Grizzlies on Wednesday.