L.A. Clippers fall to Spurs in overtime; series tied 1-1

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “Blake puts more pressure on himself than anybody else does,” he said. “This game did not come down to one possession. We were still up two points. If we’re being honest, we were blessed to be in that situation, considering the free throws and turnovers. There is no way we get to 1-1 without Blake, so we will move forward.”The Clippers had 11 turnovers, the Spurs nine.Even with Griffin’s turnover, Paul had a chance to win the game for the Clippers in regulation, but his 19-foot jumper with 1.9 seconds left did not fall.The Clippers trailed 88-78 with 6:41 to play in the fourth quarter before coming all the way back to take a short-lived two-point lead. That makes the loss even more difficult to take, Paul said. “Yeah, it’s tough, but we’ve gotta get past it,” he said. “We can’t go back and play it over again, so get past it. It’s 1-1, we know we’ve gotta win a game there.”The Spurs were quite awful offensively in their Game 1 loss to the Clippers on Sunday, shooting just 36.6 percent from the field. They shot 46.2 percent on Wednesday.Leading the way was Tim Duncan. He scored 28 points on 14-of-23 shooting. He also pulled down 11 rebounds. Kawhi Leonard scored 23 points on 9-of-16 shooting and grabbed nine rebounds and Mills scored 18 big points off the bench. He scored four of his points in the fourth quarter and eight of San Antonio’s 17 points in overtime.“He was huge,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said of Mills. “We needed to score to stay in the game.”Popovich also praised Duncan, a certain Hall of Fame inductee down the road.“He was spectacular,” Popovich said. “He continues to amaze me with the things that he is able to do. He is a competitive guy. He always comes to play and tonight he got some shots to fall and he did a great job for us.”Clippers coach Doc Rivers was impressed as well.“He was great,” he said of Duncan. “I mean, he was terrific.”Said Duncan: “We moved the ball, got to areas that were open, we shared the ball and I was just lucky to get the shots when they were available.”Even so, Paul figures his team could have and perhaps should be up 2-0 heading to San Antonio.“We’ve got to finish,” he said. “We’ve been talking about it all season long. We had an opportunity to win a game, go up 2-0 and didn’t take full advantage of it.” A year ago it was Chris Paul who took the blame for the Game 5 loss at Oklahoma City in the Western Conference semifinals. On Wednesday, Blake Griffin put himself on blast.With the Clippers up 94-92 and time winding down in regulation, Griffin lost the ball on the Clippers’ end of the floor with 11.9 seconds to play. The miscue led to San Antonio’s Patty Mills making two free throws to tie the game and send it into overtime, where the Spurs emerged with a 111-107 victory over the Clippers on Wednesday night before 19,482 at Staples Center.The Western Conference first-round playoff series is tied 1-1. Game 3 is Friday at San Antonio.Griffin had a triple-double with 29 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists. That was of no solace to him.center_img “That game’s pretty much on me,” he said. “Got the ball, up two, need to take care of it and get a good shot or try to get fouled and turned it over. So the game’s on me.”Griffin also had a turnover with 1:11 left in overtime and the Clippers trailing 105-101. That led to a layup by Kawhi Leonard for a 107-101 Spurs lead with 56.6 seconds to play.DeAndre Jordan scored 20 points for the Clippers but made just 6 of 17 from the free-throw line as Spurs coach Gregg Popovich went to the Hack-a-DJ ploy. Jordan also had 15 rebounds.Chris Paul scored 21 points and had eight rebounds and seven assists, J.J. Redick scored 16 points but shot just 4 of 12 and Jamal Crawford scored 11 points on 4-of -3 shooting. The Clippers shot 42.3 percent.Crawford would not hear of blaming Griffin for the loss.last_img

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