LOS ANGELES, USA – Montrezl Harrell scored 34 points off the bench to lead a trio of Los Angeles Clippers players with at least 30 in a bounce-back win over the New York Knicks on Sunday, January 5 (Monday, January 6, Philippine time).
Paul George and Lou Williams added 32 points each as the Clippers won 135-132, erasing the sour taste left by a home loss to the lowly Memphis Grizzlies a day before.
It marked the first time in the Clippers’ 50-year history that 3 players scored at least 30 points.
“History is good, I guess,” said Clippers coach Doc Rivers, although he was still dissatisfied with his wards’ defensive effort.
“Have we ever won a game where the other team shot 57 percent – 132 points, I’m more upset about that than happy,” Rivers said.
But he found something to like in the Clippers’ fightback from a 16-point first-quarter deficit.
Reserves Harrell and Williams played a key role in the reversal, with Williams scoring 18 points in the 2nd quarter and Harrell 14 as the Clippers took a 76-69 halftime lead.
“Our second unit came in, they played defense, they got the stops, and then Lou caught fire,” said George, who returned to action after missing Saturday’s game with a tight left hamstring.
George said he and Patrick Beverley, back after missing 3 games with a sore right wrist, were inspired by the bench performance.
“We knew what we had to do,” he said.
George fouled out with 7:06 left to play and the Clippers up by 11.
The Knicks promptly scored 8 straight points and got to within 3 after a Marcus Morris floater with 10.4 seconds remaining.
Williams then made two free throws that proved decisive for the Clippers, who improved to 26-12 for 4th place in the Western Conference. – Rappler.com