If you looked at the final score, chances are you'd chalk it up as a blowout. But, the first half of this one was actually one of the closest games of the season. It included 12 lead changes and neither team leading by more than seven points.
The Los Angeles Clippers outscored the Dallas Mavericks 59-40 in the second half to cruise to a 109-90 win in the Big-D. The Clippers move to 41-21 and hold onto the fourth seed in the western conference, while the Mavericks drop their third-straight game and fall to 33-31 and are now tied with the Portland Trailblazers for the sixth seed.
Clippers Big Third Quarter
After sitting out much of the first half due to foul trouble, Chris Paul came out of the second half like a man on a mission. Paul struck often in the third quarter, scoring 18 points in the frame, with most of his buckets coming from drive penetration and pull-up fade away jumpers. With 4:37 left in the third quarter, the game was tied 65 all.
The Clippers would finish with an 18-3 run, highlighted by a three-pointer and a layup in the final 30 seconds of the quarter, to make it 83-68 Clippers, after trailing 52-50 at halftime. Paul ended the game with an overall dominating effort of 27 points, seven assists, four assists, three steals and 12-18 shooting from the field.
The Clippers made 11 of 20 shots as a team in the quarter and 3-6 from deep. Dallas converted just six of 21 shot attempts in the third for a dismal 29 percent. The three ball was really no help for either team, as both teams combined for 16-57 (28 percent) from beyond the arc. For Dallas, Wesley Matthews went 0-5 from three, Dirk Nowitzki finished 0-4 and Chandler Parsons went 1-4.
Jordan And Redick Shine
If there was any question if Mavs' fans still hate DeAndre Jordan, they were answered by the thunderous boos that came any time the ball was found in his hands. The negativity had little effect on him however, as he finished with his first 20-20 game of the season.
Jordan recorded 23 points and 20 rebounds and has averaged 17.5 points and 14.8 rebounds per game over the last four games, including the game against Dallas. Jordan also had a double-double at halftime with 16 points and 12 rebounds at the break.
J.J. Redick scored 16 of his total 22 points in the first half as he came out of the gates red hot. He made seven of 10 attempts in the first half, and ended the game 9-14 and 4-6 from three.
Mavs Benefit From Fouls
The Dallas Mavericks attempted 23 free throws in the first half and came away with 18 points from the charity stripe. Several Clippers were forced to spend a lot of time on the bench, including Paul, who picked up his third foul with 5:48 to go in the second quarter.
Dallas reached the bonus, as Los Angeles picked up its fifth team foul with just under eight minutes to go in the half. The Mavericks went 6-7 from the free throw line in the first quarter and 12-16 in the second. The Clippers however did not attempt their first free throws of the game until midway through the second quarter.
Dirk and Lee Lead Mavs
Despite going 9-19 and 4-11 from the field, Nowitzki and David Lee led the Mavericks with 22 and 13 points, respectively. Nowitzki recorded 12 points and six rebounds at the break, and tied the game at 61 with 7:15 to go in the third quarter by making the shot and drawing the foul for the three-point play. The future Hall of Famer recorded three three-point plays the old fashion way.
Lee continues to be a big acquisition for the Mavericks, as he contributed 13 points and eight rebounds in just over 16 minutes off of the bench.
(Video Credit: Ximo Pierto 4)
Dallas' game against Los Angeles marks its first game of the nine-straight matchups against teams with above .500 records. The Mavericks welcome the Detroit Pistons Wednesday night in hopes of ending their three-game skid.
The Clippers, who have now won four of their last five games, travels to Oklahoma City to face the Thunder Wednesday. The two have split their two games against each other, with the Clippers getting the better of the Thunder in their last game, 103-98.