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Winning in San Antonio has been quite a feat for the Los Angeles Clippers through a streak of 17 straight losses.
That streak was snapped on Saturday night as the Chris Paul-led Clippers used big second and fourth quarter runs to get by the Tony Parker-less San Antonio Spurs.
Manu Ginobili's two three-pointers after the Spurs closed the gap on a 13-point fourth quarter deficit with just over five minutes remaining, but Paul and Mo Williams, who combined for 69 points, weren't done.
The combination of the Spurs missing open shots, and Paul and Williams leading a late surge was too much for the Spurs, especially without their top two point guards.
With the loss, the Spurs drop to 26-13 on the season
In Jeff Garcia's Five Things to Watch pregame post, he noted two key stats.
- The Clippers are road warriors if they hit the century mark. The Clips are 9-0 this season on the road when they score 100 or more points.
- Let's keep it a low-scoring affair tonight. The Clippers are 2-9 this season on the road when scoring under 100 points.
The Spurs couldn't keep the Clippers under 100 and they were missing some of their own firepower to match the Clippers' offensive efforts.
“It was a great effort. I thought our guys did a great job. The last half of that fourth quarter we had some great open looks from three. We just couldn’t make them. It’s a bad combination if you’re not hitting those and you’re not hitting your free throws. You really put yourself in a hole and the guys still were there the whole time and then Mo (Williams) hit those two threes in a row. That was the difference right there. It was a good effort and I’m proud of them.”
- Spurs coach Gregg Popovich
By the numbers
51.9 - The Clippers three-point shooting percentage compared to the Spurs' 40 percent.
5 - Aside from Williams' 33-point outburst, the rest of the Clippers bench only managed 5 points.
62.5% - The Spurs struggled from the charity strip throughout the game, making only 20 of 32 attempts.
Kawhi Leonard finished with 10 points and six rebounds in 20 minutes. Leonard has scored in double figures in five of his last six games. Cory Joseph was recalled from the Toros with backup point guard T.J. Ford out. Joseph played just 39 seconds.
Is that me or when TP doesn't play we're worse off defensively? lol I mean he didn't play in Portland game and they scored 140 points, and he didn't play last night and the Clippers scored 120, maybe TP is the key to our defense....
@Spursforever69 You're right. When we're good offensively, we force other teams to focus on their defense. When we're off offensively, other teams don't have to focus that much on defense and they grill us with their offense. Our Spurs don't get the recognition they deserve, but Tony Park has aroused the media's attention. That says something. I believe in this team.
Enough with depth of the bench. Just one man taken away, and the spurs crumble. TP did not play last saturday for a "bruise tigh." What happened? They were eaten by the clippers. The absence of TP was so crucial that they can't play right. Enough with reserving the stamina of some players for the championship run. Alibi!
@rtesoro440 It's not that we "crumbled" or the spurs couldn't play. The clippers just got hot. They were on fire from the 3pt line. Calm down, dude. Aside from that, RJ is useless.
So what do we do with non-performing player? As the trade deadline approaches, the more pressure will be felt by the spurs. "Take your pillow and go to sleep" said coach Pops. I wonder how much they crave for Kaman. There were rumors that Blacthe and one from the new orleans are available. Come on Mr. Buford pull the trigger.
@rtesoro440 @Joey What trigger? they won't trade Kaman for RJ that'd be dumb for them. they'd want young prospects, high picks which we don't have and Kaman's salary is 14 million. Unless he's bought out of his contract we won't have a chance at acquiring him and even then the Heat and Warriors are front-runners for him...
@JoeyHope springs eternal!
@rtesoro440 @Joey I believe that RJ is still an explosive player like he used to be, but he doesn't fit in our system or can't get the grip on his role. I doubt we'll make any trades. Our team is fine, it's just RJ who's been unproductive. Unfortunately, there isn't much we can do but hope he'll show up in the play offs. My opinion.