High-flying Clippers pacify toothless Bulls

Sun Nov 18, 2012 12:22am EST
 

(Reuters) - The Los Angeles Clippers have continued their impressive opening to the NBA season, matching their best start to a year in franchise history by thumping the Chicago Bulls 101-80 at Staples Center on Saturday.

The victory was the fifth straight for the Clippers, who were led by big man Blake Griffin's double-double and Jamal Crawford's prolific shooting to improve to 7-2.

Griffin scored a game high 26 points and added 10 rebounds while Crawford chimed in with 22 points of his own as the home side dominated.

"It's about my team mates, it's about how they space the floor and are giving me the confidence throughout the game," Griffin told reporters.

"It was a very important win."

Having played eight of their opening nine games at home the Clippers must now prove their worth on the road as they head for a tough four-game run in five days, including contests against the San Antonio Spurs (8-2) and Oklahoma City Thunder (7-3).

The only other time in franchise history the Clippers won seven of their opening nine games was 2005-06 where they finished 47-35 on the year, and ended up one victory short of the Western Conference Finals.

"Yeah, we're thrilled. But it's early," head coach Vinny Del Negro said.

"We're happy but we let a couple of games slip away.   Continued...