Not the start the Los Angeles Clippers were looking for. Coming off the All-Star break the Clippers fell to the Minnesota Timberwolves 109-97. It seems as if the T-Wolves have the Clippers number this year. In a previous meeting in the Staples Center, PF Kevin Love sank a game winning three point shot as time expired. This time the T-Wolves bested the Clippers differently, as they went on a tear the entire fourth quarter. It was a great showing of shooting by the T-Wolves as it seemed as if they could not miss a shot in the quarter. While the Clippers were totally out of rhythm and could not buy a bucket. The game was entertaining before the start of the fourth quarter; both teams were trading shot for shot and the game was tied at the end of the third quarter. PF Blake Griffin had his finest quarter as a pro; he had 18 points in the first quarter. He was on his way to having a monster night that should have resulted in a Clipper win, but then disaster struck.
The Clippers were looking sharp at the start of the game, it looked to me that they were ready to start the second half of the season with a bang. The offense was playing spectacularly and it seemed as if the Clippers were in total command of the game. The score did not indicate that because they T-Wolves hung around not letting the Clips blow the game open and would eventually run the Clippers out of their own arena. Hard to believe when the box score showed that PG Ricky Rubio had only 2 points and 9 assists and Kevin Love scored 10 points and added just 7 boards. So how was the win possible?
The bench would be the answer: particularly rookie forward Derrick Williams and fellow forward Michael Beasley. Each scored an unpredictable 27 points (add those numbers up and it equals 54 off the bench). Showing the future in Minnesota is looking very bright.
Once again I have to mention the injured Chauncey Billups. I said this before and I’ll say it again, losing Billups has hurt the offense substantially. Blake finished the night with 30 points and PG Chris Paul had 27 points, but no one else stepped up in the offense. SG Randy Foye did help with 13 points, while guard Mo Williams had 8 points off the bench and forward Caron Butler only scored 2 points going 1-10 in his field goal attempts. Ouch!
It will be difficult for the Clippers to contend with high scoring teams if they cannot find a consistent third scorer on the team. I feel as if it’s going to have to be Caron. He had an awful game versus the T-Wolves, but if the Clippers want to win the division and most importantly win the playoffs, he needs to step it up. Tough loss for the Clips, hopefully they bounce back. LET’S GO CLIPS!!!!!!!!!!!