Clippers cruise past NBA-best ThunderJan 31, 2012 - 6:49 AM
Caron Butler also added a season-best 22 points, while Chauncey Billups donated 13 and Mo Williams posted 12. Los Angeles made 13 treys one game after making 14, both part of a three-game winning streak.
"They're a good team, the best we've played all year," Thunder head coach Scott Brooks said of the Clippers. "They had their way in all parts of the game."
While the Clippers had six players in double figures, the Thunder stat sheet was dominated by the usual suspects. Kevin Durant scored a game-best 36 points on 14-of-23 shooting to go along with 13 rebounds, while Russell Westbrook recorded 31 points with five steals, four assists and four rebounds. Daequan Cook added 12 off the bench for Oklahoma City, which saw its four-game winning streak come to an end.
The Clippers came out firing with Paul and Butler doing most of the damage. Butler drained a trey for an 18-11 lead, and Paul found Williams for another triple and a 23-13 lead nearing the four-minute mark. Paul had five assists in the first quarter, his last a deft lob that resulted in a DeAndre Jordan slam for a 32-19 game.
Los Angeles took an 11-point lead into the second quarter and kept attacking, increasing the margin to 50-35 on Butler's layup. Oklahoma City followed with an 11-2 surge, taking it to the Clippers with the Westbrook-Durant combo. The duo scored nine of the points with Durant's three and free throw cutting the deficit to 52-46.
The momentum swung right back to the home team thanks to a barrage of three- pointers. Williams made a pair, Butler drained one and Billups connected with 25 seconds left for a 64-46 halftime score.
"Those four threes at the end of the first half didn't seem real," Jordan said.
Griffin didn't let the Clippers take their foot off the pedal in the third. He attacked the rim at every chance, scoring the team's first nine points of the period, including a thunderous slam and subsequent free throw for a 73-51 lead.
Oklahoma City sliced the margin to 15 points, but the Clippers again closed a quarter strong with Butler's layup and Paul's three pushing the lead back to 20 at 90-70 after three stanzas.
The Thunder got within 14, and again the Clippers pushed back, reaching the century mark on Griffin's slam for a 100-81 game with just under 7 1/2 minutes to play. The Clippers saw their lead drop to as low as 11, but they were never seriously threatened the rest of the way.
Oklahoma City fell to 8-3 as the visitor this season...Los Angeles improved to 10-2 as the host...The Clippers led by as many as 22 points...Butler scored his 10,000th career point in the victory.
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 100
LOS ANGELES: 112
Jan 31 1:01 AM
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 70
LOS ANGELES: 90
End of 3rd
Jan 31 12:24 AM
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 46
LOS ANGELES: 64
Jan 30 11:43 PM
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 25
LOS ANGELES: 36
End of 1st
Jan 30 11:06 PM
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 0
LOS ANGELES: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Jan 30 10:43 PM
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