7:00 PM ET, February 4, 2012
Verizon Center, Washington, DC
Blake Griffin finishes 2 assists shy of triple-double as Clippers pummel Wizards
WASHINGTON -- Blake Griffin fell two assists shy of a triple-double, and he didn't even play in the fourth quarter.
Griffin had 21 points, 11 rebounds and tied a season-high with eight assists to lead Los Angeles, but he was hardly the only Clippers player to pile up big numbers.
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DeAndre Jordan shot 9 for 11 from the field for 18 points and had 11 rebounds. Mo Williams had 17 points and eight assists. The Clippers outrebounded Washington 53-32 and had a 32-17 advantage in assists.
Los Angeles lost to the Nuggets on Thursday and started a six-game road trip at Washington, so this was exactly the type of win the Clippers were looking for.
"We were all disappointed in our performance the other day against Denver," Jordan said. "We really wanted to jump out on them early and set the tone."
John Wall and Nick Young each scored 14 points for the Wizards, which were also coming off an even-more-disappointing-than-usual game, a 106-89 loss at Toronto on Friday night. Unlike Los Angeles, Washington was unable to get a momentum boost, instead losing for the fourth straight time and falling to 4-20 this season.
"It was pitiful," Wall said. "They could do whatever they wanted -- whenever they wanted -- all night."
Los Angeles never trailed and opened up a double-digit lead midway through the first quarter after a 13-2 run. The Clippers led 28-17 after the first quarter and removed any doubt about the outcome by scoring the final nine points of the first half, taking a 58-34 lead into halftime.
The Wizards weren't able to regroup after the break, scoring just four points in the first 6½ minutes of the third quarter as Los Angeles opened up a 36-point lead, the largest advantage the Clippers have had in any game this season.
"We came out in the third quarter and kind of put it on them there pretty quickly," Griffin said. "Guys were hitting shots and we were getting stops and getting out in the open court -- I think that's when you feel like we can keep it going."
Griffin had a number of his usual crowd-pleasing dunks, saving his best for last. With a minute to play in the third quarter, Griffin soared high for an alley-oop dunk from Williams.
The monster slam gave Los Angeles an 81-50 lead and earned the biggest cheer of the night from the Verizon Center crowd of 19,419. It was Washington's largest crowd of the season.
"We all should have been embarrassed. We were on our home court -- and they came out and did what they wanted," said Wizards forward Rashard Lewis, who had two points. "As a unit, none of us came to play tonight."
Jordan followed Griffin a few seconds later with an electrifying dunk of his own, flying in after Griffin missed a free throw to slam the ball home.
The Clippers were playing so well it hardly mattered that Chris Paul had an off night on the offensive end, scoring a season-low two points on 1 of 9 shooting. Paul did have seven assists and said he was pleased by the team's defensive effort.
"From the tip to the end of the game, we controlled the game," Paul said. "When we get stops, we're tough to guard in transition. We've got the shooters, we've got the high fliers and all that. When we defend teams, we're tough to beat."
Wizards F Trevor Booker was in the starting lineup for the sixth time this season, and the first since Jan. 16. He replaced Jan Vesely, who had started the previous five games. ... Washington scored fewer than 20 points in each of the first three quarters for the first time this season. ... Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said F Kenyon Martin, who signed with Los Angeles Friday, will join the team Sunday in Orlando. Del Negro said he didn't know what role Martin would play until they met and Del Negro assessed Martin's conditioning. ... Caron Butler was facing Washington for the first time since the Wizards traded him to Dallas in 2010. ... Griffin was 1 for 7 from the free throw line, missing his first five. Including the Clippers' previous game against Denver, Griffin missed seven free throws in a row, which tied a career long drought according to STATS LLC.
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 4: Head Coach Vinny Del Negro of the Los Angeles Clippers takes a time out against of...(Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||45-83 (.542)||30-80 (.375)|
|3PM-3PA||11-23 (.478)||7-18 (.389)|
|FTM-FTA||6-17 (.353)||14-23 (.609)|
|Fast Break Points||26||16|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||21 (2/0)||18 (3/0)|
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