Clippers bury Pelicans under the Three Ball

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Published: February 24, 2014

Well, the Clippers certainly do have a high-octane offense.  Paul still can get wherever he wants, and he can hit from midrange whenever he feels its his time.  Still, the Pelicans could have handled that if they had slowed the rest of the Clippers.  It didn’t turn out that way.  The Pelicans would go on little runs where they jammed the middle effectively – but then the Clippers would launch some threes and stretch the lead back out again.  The Clippers buried a ridiculous number of threes in the end, finishing 57% for the game from deep.  The final result was Clippers 123 to Pelicans 110.

The primary show, however, was Griffin vs Davis, and it didn’t disappoint.  Griffin generally got the better of Davis in transition, when he could bump and muscle Anthony under the basket as everyone changed sides.  Then, a quick delivery later and Davis couldn’t do much more than foul to stop him.  On the opposite side, Davis was facing up Griffin in the Half court and attacking him – successfully for the most part.  In the end, Davis finished with 26-11-2 in 38 minutes and Griffin had 22-4 in 33 minutes – though Griffin(or someone on the Clippers) did get under Davis’s skin.  There was a little stretch in the third where he was clearly trying a little too hard to punish Griffin and it got him out of his game – and in the fourth, his emotions were flying high enough that he got really demonstrative towards referee Bennett Salvatore and got his first technical foul.

I like the fire though.

Other Observations:

  • After opening the second half with a disastrous series of plays, Monty nailed Roberts to the bench the rest of the game and rode Rivers at the point the rest of the way.  Rivers paid him back by playing his usual game defense and getting into the teeth of the Clippers defense.   He and Evans also started finding Morrow for open looks and that helped considerably.
  • Evans was doing his usual masterful job of finding shooters at the end of the drive, but his shots were Uhhhh-gly.  Half the time he was just flipping a shot over the shoulder on a reverse – and didn’t even seem to be looking at the basket.  Yeah, just the drive itself allowed people to clean up a lot of loose baskets, but he’s got to at least keep focused on the rim more.
  • Ajinca had probably his best game as a Pelican, putting up 19 and 12 as he continued his pattern of playing well against big centers with little shooting skill.  He still fouled too much and kept being beat on lobs, but he also moved intelligently into space for short jumpers and worked hard on the boards.
  • Stiemsma was awful.  He’s at his best when solid positioning will allow you to defend well in the post.  With all the screen and rolls the Clippers run with Blake and DeAndre, positioning doesn’t help you that much.  He couldn’t do anything.
  • Gordon got 3 quick fouls and didn’t get a lot of time.  His three point shot was on, but he only made one foray into the paint all game – on a transition basket.  He’s got to attack to be effective.
  • The 20 offensive rebounds for the Pelicans were what kept them in the game.  It’s an impressive number.

Dell Demps gave an interview yesterday where he said we should get an update on Jrue and Ryan Anderson this Friday.  Let’s hope for good news!  Next game is Wednesday!

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