The Los Angeles Clippers remain on top of the West with a win over the Phoenix Suns.
The Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Phoenix Suns 115-99 as they bounced back from a poor performance in the first half to maintain the top spot in the West.
In the first half, the Clippers let the Suns keep themselves in the game as shots were not falling and Los Angeles turned the ball over 12 times while allowing Phoenix to score 16 points off those turnovers.
Los Angeles allowed Phoenix to score ten points in transition in the first half while the Suns outscored the Clippers with 26 to 18 points in the paint. Offensively and defensively, the Clippers were lackadaisical on both ends of the floor in the first half.
The Clippers also shot 35.4 percent from the field on 17-48 shots while also shooting 41.7% from three-point range on 5-12 shots in the first half. The Suns also outscored the Clippers 27-23 to tie the game at the half 49-49.
Los Angeles allowed Phoenix to stay in the mix as their first-half performance played down to the Suns. This has been a pattern so far this season as they have done this in the first half of games then pick up the pace and lock down on the defensive end.
The Clippers definitely came out of halftime focused on a 12-5 run highlighted by back to back three-pointers by Tobias Harris.
The third quarter was when the Clippers went on a scoring tear as they outscored the Suns 40-25 as they shot 64.7 percent from the field on 11-17 field goals to go along with a 71.4 three-point percentage on 5-7 shots from beyond the arc.
As the Clippers’ offense came alive in the third quarter, their defense was also back in tune. Los Angeles was able to hold Phoenix to 42.9 percent from the field as they shot 9-27 field goals in the quarter.
The Clippers forced the Suns to turn the ball over five times in the third quarter, which led to eight Clippers’ points off those turnovers.
In the fourth quarter, the Clippers outscored the Suns 26-25 to rout the Suns. The Clippers’ bench also picked up their scoring in the fourth quarter as they outscored the Suns’ bench 21-10. Overall, the Suns’ bench outscored the Clippers 47-44.
This was the second game in a row that the Clippers bench was outscored by an opponent. The Clippers’ bench currently sits in the number one spot of the points per game category with an average 54.6 points.
Elie Okobo led the Suns’ bench with 19 points on 8-12 field goals and Josh Jackson followed suit with 15 points in the contest.
Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell combined for 38 points off the bench as they carried the load for the Clippers’ bench mob.
Though there were struggles throughout the game for the Clippers as a whole, Danilo Gallinari had himself a game while reigning Western Conference Player of the Week, Tobias Harris, had an off game on the offensive end.
Gallinari started the game hot in the first half as he scored 15 points in the first half leading all scorers as he was 4-5 from the field and perfect from the three-point line 2-2.
Gallinari split his free throws with 30 seconds left in the game to seal the win for the Clippers. He finished the game with a double-double that consisted of 28 points and 10 rebounds to go with four assists and one steal.
On an off night, Harris finished the game with 18 points on 7-15 field goals to go with ten rebounds and three assists. Boban Marjanović scored 12 points and grabbed 12 rebounds. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 13 points, seven rebounds, and six assists.
Devin Booker led the Suns in scoring with 23 points to go with four rebounds and four assists.
Los Angeles remains in the first place spot within the Western Conference as they move to 14-6 on the season. The Clippers have won nine straight games at home and are currently on a three-game winning streak.
The Clippers’ winning streak and their record will be tested as they will face the Sacramento Kings (10-10) on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. on TNT.