Friday night saw the return of the Los Angeles Clippers (15-5) two All-Star players after a two game absence. They led the way to victory on the road against the Orlando Magic (8-12) in blowout fashion 116-90 . The Clippers did not look like they were on the back half of a back-to-back, and started off strong. The Magic were able to tie it by the end of the first quarter due to fouling Terrance Ross on 3 point attempts on consecutive possessions, where he sunk 6 free throws in a row. The rest of the way was all Clippers as they were able to keep Orlando and their best player, Nikola Vucevic in check, leading by as much as 28. Great all around play from everyone, and great road win.
STAR OF THE GAME
PG13. Paul George did not miss a beat upon his return, and his tight hamstring apparently has loosened up. He led the team and game with 26 points on 10 out of 19 shooting, to go along with 9 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals. It sure feels good to have him and Kawhi Leonard back. When I read they were out due to health and safety protocols a few games ago, I feared the worst. I thought it was the Clippers curse in full effect. Just when the team seemed to be hitting their stride, something happens. I thought we were going to lose significant ground in the Western Conference. I am elated those fears were for naught. The duo both put the hammer down on the Magic, and did not let up. This very well could have been another close game if it were not for them leading the way.
Patrick Beverley is still out with knee soreness. Can this guy just get healthy already? He has not had a full season of play under his belt in I don’t know how long. He sure talks and boasts a lot for a guy who can’t seem to stay on the court. He can’t help the team win from his Twitter account, no matter how much he thinks it helps. He needs to rest those knees so he can get back out there, because him and his leadership, defense, and passion for play are missed.
No real surprises for the Clippers. All the contributors were the usual suspects, so I will go ahead and give it to an Orlando player with Terrence Ross and his team leading 24 points off the bench. He has been an up and down player throughout his career. Some nights he’ll look like an All-Star, and some he will all but disappear. He seems to like playing against LAC though. He had a career high 50 points against them back in 2014 when he was with the Toronto Raptors. Early on in this game it looked like he was on his way to matching it, as it took a good while for him to miss a shot. A good night for him, but don’t expect him to be making any All-Star teams.
At New York Knicks, Sunday, January 31st at 10am
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