|Date of game: 3/27/2014
Recap: Dallas vs. LA Clippers
Dallas, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Paul scored 31 points with nine assists to lead the Los Angeles Clippers to a 109-103 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday.
Paul made amends for his shooting struggles in LA's last game, a 98-96 loss at New Orleans, where the point guard shot a career-worst 0-for-12 from the floor.
"It was big for us," said Paul on the outcome of the game. "This would have been a tough loss especially after last night. Going into Houston is a big game, but it feels good to get a win on this trip."
The Clippers have a meeting on deck with the Rockets that pits No. 3 against No. 4, respectively, in the Western Conference. LA owns a slim one-game lead over Houston in the standings entering the matchup on Saturday.
Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan each recorded double-doubles for the Clippers, with Griffin scoring 18 points with 13 rebounds and Jordan netting 16 with 15 boards.
Los Angeles has now taken seven of its last nine in the series with Dallas, including all three meetings this season.
Vince Carter paced Dallas with a season high-tying 23 points off the bench, while Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points with nine rebounds in defeat. Monta Ellis scored 12 points on a paltry 4-for-19 shooting in the Mavericks' third loss over their last five games.
Mavericks forward Jae Crowder shot a perfect 5-for-5 from the field for 13 points off the bench in 18 minutes of action.
With the loss, Dallas fell a half-game behind Phoenix for eighth place in the Western Conference playoff picture.
The game was tied at 81-apiece entering the fourth quarter and Brandan Wright scored the final four points of a 10-0 quarter-opening spurt to help the Mavs to a 91-81 advantage.
Los Angeles used an 8-0 run to pull within three, 93-90 after a jumper from Paul. A Jordan slam then cut the deficit to one with 3:37 remaining in the fourth.
Nowitzki, a 92 percent shooter from the free throw line, missed 2-of-3 from the stripe before Ellis knocked down a jumper to make it a 101-97 game with 1:46 to play.
The Clippers would then end the game on a 12-2 run to secure the victory.
With the score tied at 101-101, Griffin took a feed from Paul at the elbow, dribbled to his left, then spun to his right and hit a layup with 33.9 seconds left to give the Clippers the lead that they would not relinquish.
The Mavericks ran down the clock on the ensuing possession and Ellis' jumper with 15.9 seconds to go was long. DeAndre Jordan grabbed the rebound before quickly passing it to Paul, who converted two from the line to increase the cushion and the Clippers maintained their recent dominance over the Mavs.
"We didn't get stops in the clutch," said Crowder. "Going into the fourth quarter, we didn't score the ball when the chance was given to us in the clutch so we came out on the bad end of it tonight."
Earlier, the game was tied at 29-apiece after 12 minutes and the Mavericks brought a slim 60-58 lead into the halftime break.Game Notes
The Mavs shot 37-for-79 (46.8 percent) from the field, while Los Angeles made
38-of-82 (46.3 percent) attempts from the floor ... The teams combined for 38
turnovers, with the Clippers leading the way with 20 ... Dallas shot 10-for-20
from beyond the arc ... There were 13 lead changes and seven ties ... Samuel
Dalembert ripped down 11 rebounds in the loss.