Los Angeles Clippers
MVP: Blake Griffin. He’s taken the sixth-most field goal attempts in the league this season and tonight he hoisted 25. He had a game-high 23 points (on 11 for 25 shooting) and 16 boards. Terrrence Jones couldn’t handle him so Houston tried Dwight Howard and Omer Asik, to no avail.
LVP: Chandler Parsons. In the fifth game of a tough road trip, Parsons lost his shot. He was 3 for 13 from the field (1 of 5 from behind the arc) and was a +/- of -21.
Defining moment: Darren Collison hits a big 3 with 2:09 left to extend the lead to 9, then he hits a 20-footer on the next possession. Finally he comes down and hits a layup to score seven straight points in crunch time for the Clippers.
— Eric Nielsen
Tweet(s) of the Night
Dwight Howard just twerked standing straight up while wearing Marvel Comics boxers. I can't make this stuff up.
— Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha) February 27, 2014
Big Baby is doing a pretty solid job rotating on defense already. I am satisfied customer.
— (Andrew Han) (@andrewthehan) February 27, 2014
Large Infant Sighting
The Depth Charge
|Ryan Hollins, C||3||1-2||0-0||0-0||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||-5||2|
|Hedo Turkoglu, PF||5||0-1||0-0||0-0||1||0||1||0||1||0||1||1||-6||0|
|Big Baby Davis, PF||5||0-1||0-0||2-2||1||1||2||0||0||2||1||3||+3||2|
ClipperBlog Live’s Best Moment
No CBL tonight. But be on the lookout for our MIT Sloan Sports Analytics coverage this week and next.
Check Your Messages
Riding On The Donut
Without J.J. Redick–and now perhaps Jamal Crawford–for an undetermined length of time, the Clippers are a performance car with a flat tire. All the power of Griffin (an absolute pleasure to watch tonight), precision of CP3 and passion of DJ can only go as fast as the spare can handle.
Too often the ball finds a less potent threat, whether Barnes, Dudley, Collison or even Willie Green for an open shot in a big spot. On nights where one or more make just enough plays, the trip arrives safely at its destination. But it took longer than it should tonight. And who knows how well the spare will hold up when the road gets bumpy.
To extend the metaphor to its breaking point, who can blame Doc and company for wanting to check if Danny Granger has any tread left? Of course, the issue is moot if Crawford is out for a minimal span, if Redick can return with enough time to re-acclimate before the playoffs and if Dudley finally locates his Phoenix shooting touch. But until those happy occurrences, the Clippers are limited to surface roads with a machine designed for the speedway.
– Seth Partnow
Pinning Down Parsons
The Clippers opened the game with Matt Barnes on James Harden, an expected cross match. But that left Jamal Crawford, not exactly a noted defender, to cover the Rockets’ third-leading scorer, Chandler Parsons. Parsons came in averaging nearly 17 points per game this season, and is significantly taller and stronger than Crawford. It looked like a 20-plus point game waiting to happen.
Instead, Crawford did an outstanding job simply staying in front of Parsons, closing out and preventing open looks. Parsons went 0-6 from the field in the first half, and if you hadn’t been watching closely you would hardly have known he was on the floor at all.
Harden and Dwight Howard are going to get their points just about every night; they’re superstars for a reason. But the way the Clippers handled the Rockets’ other scorers, Parsons and Patrick Beverly and Jeremy Lin, was crucial to the victory tonight. And a great sign with the playoffs looming.
– Ben Mesirow