BSP-03 NBA: Clippers erase 21-point deficit to beat Pelicans

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NBA: Clippers erase 21-point deficit to beat Pelicans

LOS ANGELES, Jan 29, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – Blake Griffin sank a clutch three-
pointer as the Los Angeles Clippers completed the team’s greatest road
comeback since 2004 with a 112-103 win over the New Orleans Pelicans on
Sunday.

Griffin drained his three-pointer with 43 seconds remaining en route to a
27-point performance against the Pelicans who were playing their first game
since a leg injury ended the season of all-star center DeMarcus Cousins.

Griffin also had 12 assists for the Clippers, who rallied from a 21-point
first-half deficit and ended the Pelicans’ four-game win streak.

Griffin said they got an earful at halftime about their play in the first
half from coach Doc Rivers.

“He got into us a little bit. He said all the things we needed to hear,”
Griffin said. “When coaches say what you need to hear and players come out
and execute on it, it’s a perfect harmony.”

Lou Williams tallied 22 points, DeAndre Jordan had 12 points and 19
rebounds, and Tyrone Wallace scored 19 points in the win.

“We never feel like we are out of a game. We find hope in being naive,”
Williams said. “We never think we are going to lose.” Anthony Davis had 25
points and 17 rebounds for the Pelicans, who missed star forward Cousins
after he tore his Achilles tendon in the final minute of Friday’s win over
Houston.

Cousins was averaging 25.2 points and 12.9 rebounds when he went down. The
Pelicans suffered just their second loss in their last nine contests.

Elsewhere, Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 27 points to lead his Milwaukee
Bucks to a 110-96 win over the Chicago Bulls.

The all-star forward added nine rebounds and eight assists to help the
Bucks improve to 3-0 since interim coach Joe Prunty replaced the fired Jason
Kidd.

In Toronto, Fred VanVleet came off the bench to score a career-high 25
points as the Toronto Raptors manhandled the visiting Los Angeles Lakers 123-
111 at the Air Canada Center.

With Sunday’s win, it became official that Raptors head coach Dwane Casey
and his staff are going to join players DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry in Los
Angeles for next month’s 2018 NBA All-Star Game.

LeBron James had 25 points, 14 assists, and narrowly missed his second
straight triple-double, as the Cleveland Cavaliers beat Detroit 121-104.

It was the Pistons’ eighth straight loss.

Russell Westbrook scored 37 points to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder in a
win over the Philadelphia 76ers, 122-112 for their eighth straight victory.

BSS/AFP/MR/ 1036hrs