Los Angeles Clippers
MVP: It must be something about Wednesdays for Chris Paul. A week after giving Russell Westbrook and the Thunder the business on national television, Paul steps up on the second night of a back-to-back and rips the Sacramento Kings for game highs of 30 points and 11 assists. And yes, Paul has scored more points on Wednesdays this season than any other day of the week, leading Mondays 316 points to 284.
That was … on fire: The Clippers were outrebounded by a Kings team missing DeMarcus Cousins, and Sacramento had fewer turnovers despite missing Darren Collison. The Kings also made 17 more free throws than the Clippers tonight. But Los Angeles hit Sacramento with a season-high 17 three-pointers, including seven from J.J. Redick, his most since January 2014. Three of Redick’s treys came in the fourth quarter, effectively putting the Kings to bed after they played a relatively close contest.
X factor: On a team full of elders, Hedo Turkoglu is the oldest, with his 36th birthday on Thursday. Turkoglu hadn’t started a game before this week since the season opener of the 2012-2013 NBA season, a contest in which he broke his left hand. Turkoglu put up an outstanding game in his second start in as many nights, busting the Kings for a season-high 19 points, making five threes. It’s been over three years since Turkoglu had that many points, and former Kings teammate Vlade Divac got to witness a show.
— Law Murray
Tweets Of The Game
Hedo Turkoglu just hit his fourth three-pointer, then looked over at Vlade Divac and grinned.
— Ailene Voisin (@ailene_voisin) March 19, 2015
I called out almost every three before he made it! @hidoturkoglu15 . TURK!!!
— Jamal Crawford (@JCrossover) March 19, 2015
Never seen anyone go from happy to mad and back again faster than DeAndre Jordan.
— Ben Bolch (@latbbolch) March 19, 2015
Clippers matched a season-high with 17 made three pointers. There's a lot of that going around for teams playing the Kings.
— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) March 19, 2015
Check Your Messages
It’s been a frustrating year for Spencer Hawes. He’s asked to play like DJ on defense, chasing point guards out to the half way line, and like Redick on offense, spotting up and letting his excellent post passing skills rot. The Clippers are very facially active and like to chat, but Hawes is pretty clearly the team and league leader in eye rolls and sighs per 36 minutes, as well as real adjusted F-bomb plus-minus. But even in this kind of a year, the first half of this game much have been particularly dispiriting. Hawes, 7′ 1″, with a soft touch in the post, found himself guarded by Andre Miller, 6′ 2″. Not on a switch. Not on bad Kings fast break defense. No, it was by design, three straight possessions. Miller could just about reach Hawes’ upper lip if he stretched his arms really far. And yet Hawes couldn’t get a touch. At some point, something has to give for this guy. Here’s hoping it isn’t just getting traded for a second round pick in the off season.
– J. D. Evans
A Place at the Table
One only has to go back as far as last season to see Chris Paul and J.J. Redick mentioned as one of the best backcourt duos in the NBA. Fast forward one season ahead, and much like Paul’s outstanding yet rarely mentioned MVP caliber season, and the talk has shifted elsewhere.
Thompson and Curry. Matthews and Lillard. Lowry and DeRozan. Wall and Beal. Yet since the All-Star break, only the Splash Brothers have averaged more points (44.6 ppg combined) from their starting backcourt than the Clippers’ dynamic pairing of Paul and Redick (40.9 ppg combined).
So, why aren’t we talking more about Chris Paul and J.J. Redick again?
– Brandon Tomyoy