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Red-hot Clippers put on a show at Rockets expense, win big

Nov 5, 2013, 2:40 AM EDT

LOS ANGELES — This happens a few games a season.

It was a perfect storm of the already explosive Clippers offense really finding its flow in an up-tempo game, a Rockets defense that was just floundering, some foul trouble to the Rockets defensive anchor, and to top it all off Chris Paul had the Midas touch.

The result was a highlight-filled blowout, a 137-118 Clippers blowout win that the fans in Staples Center could really savor. They got to boo Dwight Howard lustily — when he wasn’t on the bench with foul trouble — and they got the full compliment of highlight alley-oops, impressive handles and long-range threes.

“It was one of those games,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “Everything. We were making everything. They were in foul trouble. It was for us tonight, a lot of things went right.

The Clippers have the best offense in the NBA this young season — they are averaging a ridiculous 116.6 points per 100 possessions after this game. They have been hot all season on that end but the 125 points per 100 they put up this game — they shot 52.1 percent overall and hit 15-of-38 from three — bolstered that number.

“They had 15 threes and a ton of paint points (50), they had the best of both worlds,” Rockets coach Kevin McHale said. “We wanted to keep them out of the paint and shoot long jump shots. We didn’t do that.”

The route started started from the opening tip, where the Clippers came out sharp and the Rockets looked like they enjoyed the night out in Los Angeles the night before a little too much. Early on the Clippers started running J.J. Redick off screens like he’s vintage Ray Allen and James Harden did not want to fight through them. Harden was a few steps slow and the result was 15 first quarter points for Redick as the Clippers just kept going to his hot hand.

“I’ve always been a guy who bases his game on movement and moving without the ball,” Redick said.

Pretty soon everyone on the Clippers got a hot hand — Los Angeles put up 42 points on 69.6 percent shooting (4-of-6 from three) in the first quarter. CP3 had 9 assists in the first 12 minutes and the Clippers were so hot even Blake Griffin nailed a couple midrange jumpers. The Clippers put up a franchise record 78 points in the first 24 minutes, and check out their shot chart from the first half.


The Clippers were up 17 after one and while the Rockets tried to make a game of it with some runs, all that was left was to put on a show. Which they did.

In the end Chris Paul had 23 points and 17 assists, Redick had 26 points, Jamal Crawford 21 and seven Clippers were in double figures.

Credit the Rockets for not giving up, they cut the lead down to 10 or 8 a few times, but each times the Clippers responded.

CP3 abused Jeremy Lin with a stepback then drove past him. Redick just took Harden off the dribble. The Clippers would get out and run and the Rockets transition defense was nonexistent.

While it was not the team he played for Howard’s return to Los Angeles still got him getting booed from the opening introductions, followed by a rough night. He picked up two quick fouls and three in the first quarter, limiting him to 6:27 in the first half.

“The foul trouble messed me up a little bit but I just tried to have a better second half,” Howard said. “I missed a lot of easy shots tonight.”

As for the booing?

“I don’t care, they can boo me a million times and I’ll still play,” Howard said, who went on to repeat his standard lines about moving on from his decision and feeling happy now.

Just not so much after that loss.

  1. ji8888 - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:19 AM


  2. Andrea Centenari - Nov 5, 2013 at 6:43 AM

    You can’t challenge the Clippers on the scoring side

  3. ufools - Nov 5, 2013 at 8:41 AM

    No, they just smoked what was supposed to be a contender. Houston…..still average.

  4. kb2408 - Nov 5, 2013 at 9:10 AM

    As I said before the season began, Harden and Lin are below average defenders. It’s just a matter of time before Dwight starts crying about having to cover up for their ineptitude. Speaking of Dwight, didn’t he look like the same dude who suited up for the LAKERS? Silly fouls, turnovers, missed ft’s and smiling all the while. And where is the evidence of all the work he put in with Hakeem? He is the same robotic Dwight. Mark my word, the LAKERS dodged a huge bullet this summer thanks to dwight signing with Houston.

    • dblevins2013 - Nov 5, 2013 at 11:03 AM

      Bitter Flakers fan can’t wait to kick yalls A$$ on Thursday and then we will see who talking $hit it was just our first lost to the best team in L.A. Dodged a bullet the whole city was putting up signs begging him to stay the owner did everything but suck his blank to keep him and now he is with 4th youngest team in the NBA with a real chance to win Championships for years to come just listen to any of the people on the sport stations and they are all saying it. Stop hating he did not want to play for a old Kobe and Flakers team not to mention the coach sucks. Good luck with your miserable years to come!!

      • asimonetti88 - Nov 5, 2013 at 12:15 PM

        Miserable years to come? Hardly… it’s almost Christmas! Hard to be miserable at the most wonderful time of the year.

      • kb2408 - Nov 5, 2013 at 12:49 PM

        If you’ve seen the same Dwight we’ve all seen, I wouldn’t be planning any championship parades. As for the LAKERS begging. I put it this way, had the LAKERS truly wanted Dwight Phil would be the coach and Kobe would’ve been informed that the team is now Dwight’s. The whole sign thing was a half hearted effort to appease an emotionally soft player that needs to be told he’s great.

      • JHathwell - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:02 PM

        This is a completely ridiculous, ham-fisted homer response.

        Loved it. Keep it up!

    • JHathwell - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:07 PM

      Indeed. Anyone who suffered through last years’ Laker team was praying he’d go elsewhere so that we’d be spared 5 more years Dwight. It’s amazing now that even with all of the stories that have come out about dwight refusing to play pick n roll and torpedoing the Laker chemistry from day one, there are still people who think Houston are contenders or still insist on blaming Kobe or D’ Antoni for what happened.

      • dblevins2013 - Nov 6, 2013 at 8:18 AM

        Praying he would go elsewhere how that A$$ kicking taste last night by the mavs!! Rockets went into Portland and kick there A$$ with Dwight and Harden having monster games that’s chemistry!! Houston is a very big contender see you Thursday for you A$$ kicking and yes I will be back on here to talk smack will you??

      • JHathwell - Nov 6, 2013 at 8:03 PM

        Are you aware the Rockets, your so-called contender, go put over the Clippers’ knee to the tune of 138 points? Wasn’t Dwight supposed to come in and improve the defense?

  5. jimeejohnson - Nov 5, 2013 at 10:42 AM

    Words marked.

  6. mat9844 - Nov 5, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Of course it’s early in the season, and of course, they’re not going to win all their games this big ~ BUT they are fun and entertaining to watch, and the action is always non-stop. And sports are supposed to be entertaining. Right?

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