LOS ANGELES — Buoyed by a newfound sense of urgency, the Clippers took it to the Utah Jazz from the opening tip. The patch of actual property beneath the basket was all theirs, all sport.
Blake Griffin led a smash-mouth revival of Lob City with 24 factors and DeAndre Jordan had a double-double within the Clippers’ 99-91 victory on Tuesday evening that evened their playoff series at 1-1.
Jordan completed with 18 factors and 15 rebounds, and Chris Paul added 21 factors and 10 assists for the Clippers, who crushed the Jazz within the paint, 60-38.
“It was big,” Griffin stated. “Our spirit was great, and I think it just carried over into the first quarter, with everybody being aggressive. That’s what we need. Miss or make shots, we have to be aggressive like that. Our offensive aggressiveness will carry over to defense.”
Los Angeles stormed to a 12-point lead within the first quarter, reeling off the type of dunks that earned the group’s Lob City moniker years in the past. Jordan’s tomahawk jam put an exclamation on the top of the interval.
The Big Three of Griffin, Jordan and Paul mixed on 10-of-13 taking pictures and 6 rebounds within the first, when the Clippers shot 65 p.c. They outscored the Jazz 18-Zero within the paint.
“They played with an intensity and level from the beginning of the game,” Jazz coach Quin Snyder stated. “It was impressive.”
There was extra to come back within the second. Griffin powered down two dunks and Jordan once more ended the scoring with an alley-oop slam from Jamal Crawford that despatched the Clippers into halftime main 51-42.
“We got a lot of stops early in the game,” Jordan stated. “We were able to get out and run in transition and get some easy dunks and post steals for Blake, and then it opens up for our shooters.”
Gordon Hayward led the Jazz with 20 factors. Joe Johnson, whose floater at the buzzer gave them a two-point win in Game 1, added 13 factors off the bench.
The Jazz by no means led within the sport and received no nearer than six factors within the fourth.
“The first quarter is what really got us, and they hit us a little bit, set us back in Game 1, as well,” Hayward stated. “We definitely have to be better in the first quarter, but besides the first quarter we played them pretty even.”
Utah closed inside three factors early within the third on a basket by Derrick Favors, who began instead of injured Rudy Gobert. But Paul answered with a Three-pointer, then stole the ball from George Hill and cruised in for a layup earlier than J.J. Redick scored, capping a 7-Zero spurt to push the lead again to double digits.
Without Gobert to patrol the center, the Clippers simply had their method.
“We got to find other ways to protect the paint. That’s the challenge,” Snyder stated. “There’s no sense lamenting his absence. Just got to figure out how to be better.”
The Clippers performed protection down the stretch. Jordan got here out to the perimeter to hound Hayward, whereas Griffin received in Johnson’s face. At one level, Paul’s mouthpiece went flying and landed on the other aspect of the court docket.
Griffin took a web page out of Paul’s repertoire and buried a Three-pointer from the left nook, extending the Clippers’ result in 97-88 with 1:35 to play.
As good because the Clippers had been inside, they struggled from exterior. They had been 44 of 84 from the sphere. Shooting guards J.J. Redick and Jamal Crawford exemplified the drought. Redick was 2 of seven for four factors, whereas Crawford was Three of 12 for 10 factors. Combined, the duo missed all seven of their Three-point makes an attempt. “We need to open it up a little bit. We’ve got to make some shots,” Rivers stated.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get entry to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & different 70+ titles, share as much as 5 devices, hearken to the information, obtain as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.