Spurs crushed by Clippers in first loss of season

Thu Nov 8, 2012 2:49am EST
 
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Four-time NBA champions San Antonio Spurs crashed to their first defeat of the season as the Los Angeles Clippers dazzled with high-flying dunks and tight defense on the way to a crushing 106-84 win on Wednesday.

Unbeaten in their first four games, the Spurs were no match for an energized Clippers team at a sellout Staples Center where twice All-Star Blake Griffin was a tower of strength, recording a game-high 22 points along with 10 rebounds.

Clippers center DeAndre Jordan weighed in with 20 points and 11 rebounds while back-up guard Eric Bledsoe contributed 15 points and Matt Barnes, also off the bench, 12.

"Tonight we were so successful because of our defense," Clippers point guard Chris Paul, who totaled 10 points and 12 assists, told reporters. "One thing we said before we ran out tonight was, 'Let's just have fun out there.'

"When you defend and stop teams, that is what basketball is all about. We know that we can score, but it is actually fun to stop teams and see them get frustrated."

Seven Clippers players scored in double figures as the home team snapped a two-game losing streak in scintillating style, out-rebounding the Spurs 46-29 and out-shooting them from the field by 55.4 percent to 41.1.

Guard Danny Green poured in three three-pointers to lead the Spurs with 12 points but veteran forward Tim Duncan, with 10, was his only other team mate who got into double figures.

San Antonio, who play their next three games on the road, slipped to 4-1 for the season while Los Angeles improved to 3-2.   Continued...