Los Angeles Clippers
New York Knicks
MVP: The Knicks left space in the paint far too often this evening, and DeAndre Jordan made them pay for it. The Clippers center would make all 7 of his field goal attempts — all dunks — and finish the evening with 20 points and 8 rebounds.
That was … another blowout: The Clippers have now extended a winning streak against the New York Knicks to seven games, and have done so in grand fashion. The average margin of victory during the streak? 19 points.
X factor: Thanks to a Robin Lopez ejection and a considerable dose of Hack-a-DJ, the third quarter would last 40 minutes. However, the efforts to curb the Clippers momentum were futile, as they would outscore the Knicks 52-36 after Lopez left the game.
— Brandon Tomyoy
Tweet(s) Of The Game
— SI NBA (@si_nba) January 23, 2016
Knicks intentionally fouling DeAndre Jordan in an effort to snow the Clippers in
— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) January 23, 2016
— Seth Rosenthal (@seth_rosenthal) January 23, 2016
Check Your Messages
When in doubt, dunk.
It’s great to see strong interior play. None of that soft stuff. Punish the will of the opponent repeatedly. That’s what we got from Clippers C DeAndre Jordan.
Jordan had seven field goal attempts. He made them all, marking the most made field goals without a miss this season for him. His shot chart was glorious:
Jordan had a game-high 20 points, only the 3rd time this season he’s reached 20+ in a game this season. He and the rest of the Clippers starters wound up having the 4th quarter off. A very good thing for a team that played in Ohio the night before.
On the flipside, the Knicks big men had forgettable nights, in addition to getting yammed on all night by Jordan. Robin Lopez (3-of-11 FGs, ejected) and Kristaps Porzingis (4-of-17 FGs despite Clippers using Paul Pierce and Wesley Johnson at power forward) combined to miss 75 percent of their shots tonight. Lopez, in particular, took his frustrations out on Chris Paul’s jaw. Of course, folks were much more likely to recall CP3’s subjective incident history than they were to just accept that Lopez wasn’t about it tonight, so at least Robin has that going for him.
Here’s what the Clippers have going for them: 12 wins in their last 14, with 11 of those wins coming without Blake Griffin. Jordan and the Clippers took care of business tonight, like they have for most of the last month. Surprisingly, they only need a few Jordan dunks and 3 quarters to get it done at MSG.
The flexibility the Clippers have with their roster is such that they can fluctuate from big-to-small depending on circumstance. With two premier athletic bigs like DeAndre Jordan and Blake Griffin they can cause significant damage in the paint.
But even the best big men can be handcuffed if they don’t have adequate shooting on the perimeter. This is what makes the Clippers a truly dangerous offensive team. On a night like tonight, even with Griffin still out of the lineup, the Clippers let the snipers loose on the Knicks. When the jump shots are falling, it serves incredibly well in covering up other flaws.
The Clippers were out outrebounded 42 to 36 — but they also outshot the Knicks 56 percent to 39 percent on nine less attempts. Not only that, but anytime you’re outscoring your opponent by 27 points on three-point shots alone, you’re likely not just winning, but running away with the game. We know that perimeter shooting is no longer a luxury, but an indispensable component of today’s modern offense. The Clippers are able to lean on that weapon anytime defenses sag the paint or switch on Chris Paul pick-and-pops. That in itself is valuable.