Quick Recap: Paul’s 41 carries Clippers over Blazers


Broken ankles won’t keep Chris Paul from trying to be the best point guard in the world.

On the second night of a back-to-back, fresh off the most embarrassing moment of his professional career, Paul put the team on his back as the Clippers stormed back from 19-down to defeat the Portland Trail Blazers, 126-122.

To kick things off, the Clippers got down early, which, coming off an emotional loss to the Warriors the night before, isn’t a surprise — behind a jumper from LaMarcus Aldridge, the Blazers would take a 10-point lead over the Clippers with 2:43 left in the first quarter.

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  • Unfortunately for the Clippers, things didn’t slow down in the second quarter as the lead pushed to a game-high 19 points after a Nicolas Batum step-back three with six minutes left in the quarter, and for the remainder of the quarter, the Clippers would remain down at least 10 points.

    And then Chris Kaman happened, as the center found himself in a skirmish that ended in a flagrant 1 foul — the big man pushed Chris Paul to the ground after a crotch shot from the Clippers guard.

    From there, the Clippers outscored the Trail Blazers 43-30, with 24 of the 43 points coming from Chris Paul (14 points) and J.J. Redick (10 points).

    It wasn’t an easy comeback — each time the Clippers looked to run away with the game, Portland did an excellent job of threatening for the ‘upset’, but key buckets down the stretch from Paul and J.J. closed things out.

    It’s not every day you get a performance like this from Chris Paul, or anyone else in the NBA for that matter, but when you do, it’s hard not to appreciate it. Time and time again, the ‘Point God’ proves to be the best player on the team — and by a considerable margin — and tonight was peak CP3 — 41 points, 17 assists, 5 rebounds, 4 steals, 1 turnover.

    Joining Paul on his historic night, teammates JJ Redick and Blake Griffin put on shows of their own, with Griffin posting a near triple-double with 24 points, 7 rebounds, and 8 assists and Redick continuing his run as a scorer, with 25 points (and 8 rebounds).

    For the Blazers, the forward tandem of Nicolas Batum and LaMarcus Aldridge carried the bulk of the load, scoring a combined 50 points on 33 shots. In the backcourt, Damian Lillard and Arron Afflalo, taking the place of the injured Wesley Matthews, combined for 32 points on 25 shots.

    A solid win after dropping one to Golden State, this victory gives the Clippers a one-game lead over the Trail Blazers, a factor that’ll weigh heavy if Los Angeles enters the post-season as the 5th seed in the Western Conference.

    This win also allows the Clippers to inch further away from a San Antonio Spurs team who is winners of five straight — the Spurs are currently .5 games behind the Clippers.

    Most importantly, the win draws the Clippers closer to hopping into the top-4 as they are now only 1.5 games behind the Houston Rockets and Memphis Grizzlies.

    After a back-to-back, the Clippers get some rest before their next game.

    Next Up: @ Denver Nuggets (04/04)