Tonight’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats was a good test for the Los Angeles Clippers. Even with last night’s victory improving their streak to 7-straight wins, the memory of their 1-3 road trip earlier this season was still on everyone’s minds. Moreover, they had a tough game last night against the Bulls, so it was uncertain whether they would be able to maintain the energy needed to clinch another road win. Despite it all, the Clippers were able to come out victorious in another hard-fought 100-94 win.
The Clippers established a good momentum in the first half, moving the ball well and spreading the points pretty evenly amongst the starters, Jamal Crawford, and Matt Barnes. Blake Griffin established his presence around the rim, throwing down some huge dunks that even had the Bobcat fans clapping.
At the end of the first half, though, it seemed as if the Clippers should be leading by more than only 5 points. The surprise of the night: the overlooked Bobcats. The Bobcats came out swinging, playing a lot tougher than their record would indicate. Kemba Walker’s speed was a thorn in the Clippers’ sides, and rookie Michael Kidd-Gilchrist showed that with some experience, he will soon be a force to be reckoned with.
In the second half, the lack of sleep from last night’s late game started to become apparent in the Clippers. They were missing a lot of little, easy layups and put-backs, making the game a lot harder for themselves than needed. In the end, the Clippers were able to make some big stops to ensure their win.
For the Clippers, Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, and Matt Barnes all put up 19 points. Paul also contributed an impressive 10 assists, setting up many of the big dunks tonight.
For the Bobcats, Bryon Mullens led the team with 19 points and 8 rebounds. Kemba Walker followed with 18 points and 6 assists, and from the bench, Gerald Henderson contributed 12 points.
Tonight’s game marks the Clippers’ 8th-straight win and the Bobcats’ 9th-straight loss. The Clippers have a few days to rest for their game on Saturday against the Milwaukee Bucks. They’re going to need to be recharged for what’s sure to be a good game.