Rapid Reaction: Thunder 105, Clippers 91
November, 21, 2013
By Arash Markazi | ESPNLosAngeles.com
OKLAHOMA CITY -- When Doc Rivers took the Los Angeles Clippers to San Diego for training camp, he said he was doing it because the Clippers were behind.
They were behind teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder and San Antonio Spurs who have been together for years and have had success together. Rivers knows that kind of chemistry won't be achieved overnight and Thursday was another reminder the process of achieving it will probably take months, not days.
The Thunder beat the Clippers 105-91 in their second meeting in eight days. This time, however, there were no fights and no ejections. It was a fairly uneventful, one-sided game that was essentially over by the time the fourth quarter started.
How it happened: The Clippers continued to push throughout the game but never led and were never able to make it less than a two-possession game as the Thunder opened up a 13-point edge in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach by the time the starters returned to the court for the final push. It wouldn't matter as the Thunder pushed the lead to 15 points and the Clippers' starters were back on the bench at the end of the game.
What it means: Rivers was hoping to win both games of the Clippers' road back-to-back against Minnesota and Oklahoma City, but will have to settle for the split. The Clippers and the Thunder have split their two games so far this season with the home team claiming each win.
Hits: Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have been sensational so far this season and that continued Thursday. Paul had his 13th straight double-double to start the season, finishing with 17 points and 12 assists. Paul already broke Magic Johnson's record for most point-assist double-doubles to start a season on Wednesday.
Griffin had his 10th 20-10 game in the past 12 games and sixth in a row, finishing with 27 points and 10 rebounds. It ties the second-longest streak of Griffin's career.
Misses: Outside of Paul and Griffin, the Clippers' starters weren't as effective as they should have been. J.J. Redick was 3-of-11 with eight points, Jared Dudley was 3-of-9 for seven points and DeAndre Jordan was 2-of-8 for four points.
Stat of the game: The Clippers shot just 28.6 percent from beyond the 3-point arc, making only 8 of 28 attempts. The Clippers don't normally want to take that many 3-pointers, but if they do, they certainly need to make more than eight to justify it.
Up next: The Clippers will play the Sacramento Kings at home on Saturday in the first of back-to-back 12:30 p.m. games this weekend. The Clippers beat the Kings 110-101 in their first game of the season up in Sacramento, with Griffin posting a game-high 20 points and 17 rebounds.