The Los Angeles Clippers had an astonishing collapse in the third quarter against the Oklahoma City Thunder in their loss.
A dominant second half for the Oklahoma City Thunder led the way to the Thunder’s 128-110 win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
This was a different game for the Clippers and Thunder in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on Tuesday night from the Clippers 108-92 win against the Thunder in Los Angeles, CA. This time around, Oklahoma City came back from a 13-point Los Angeles lead at halftime to hit their stride in the second half of the game.
Terrance Ferguson’s lob to Russell Westbrook with 3:57 left in the fourth quarter put an exclamation mark in what was a dominant second half for the Thunder. Dennis Schroder’s pull-up jump shot sealed the Thunder’s win with 1:48 left in the game.
Westbrook and Paul George finished the game with a combined 64 points for the Thunder. George had 32 points, 12 rebounds, four assists, and two blocks. Westbrook had 32 points, four rebounds, eight assists, three steals, and a block.
What happened to the Los Angeles Clippers?
The opening quarter of the game was a great start for the Clippers as they led by 11 to end the first quarter. Despite the Thunder willing their way back into the game, the Clippers were very aggressive in drawing 18 fouls on the Thunder which led to 24 free throw attempts in the first half.
Mike Scott even hit a three-pointer to beat the first-quarter buzzer. The Clippers also shot 55 percent from the field in the first half as they led by 13 at halftime, 67-54 behind Danilo Gallinari’s hot start.
Gallinari provided his usual spark for Los Angeles in the first half with 23 points, 12 of which in the opening quarter. For the rest of the game, he only produced four more points in the second half.
Once the third quarter came, Gallinari and his teammates did not have any answers to the Thunder’s stellar second-half performance. The Clippers just could not develop and sustain any offense or defense.
The third quarter was not kind to Los Angeles one bit. As a team, the Clippers shot 5-20 from the field and had nine turnovers. Los Angeles allowed Oklahoma to go on 23-2 run in the third quarter as they had no ample response to the Thunder’s hot quarter.
The Clippers were held to 24 percent shooting in the third quarter, in contrast to the Thunder’s 70 percent shooting from the field. The Thunder outscored the Clippers 39-10 as the Clippers could not get their offense going. As a team, the Clippers committed six turnovers in the third quarter as well.
Los Angeles’ bench consisting of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Milos Teodosic, Lou Williams, and others faltered against the Thunder’s bench.
It was the same story in the fourth quarter as the Clippers gave up 35 points to the Thunder, despite the Clippers picking up some of their offense.
As the Clippers were trying to pick of the pieces to attempt to get themselves back into the game, Patrick Beverley turned up the heat on defense to get under Westbrook’s skin. Beverley dove into Westbrook’s legs as Westbrook was dribbling which led to a heated exchange between the two and technical fouls being issued.
Beverley’s foul on Westbrook was ruled a Flagrant 1 and his attempt to shake Westbrook backfired.
The Clippers committed 24 turnovers overall and the Thunder outrebounded the Clippers 41-38.
Gallinari led the Clippers in scoring and had 27 points on 7-15 field goals and was 3-4 from three-point range in the game. Williams led the bench in scoring with 17 points, five rebounds, and three assists. Tobias Harris had 15 points to go along with six rebounds and two assists.
The Clippers are now 4-3 on the season. Los Angeles will travel to Philadelphia to play the 76ers on Thursday evening at 4:00 p.m. PT.