Clippers 116, Jazz 114By The Sports Xchange | The SportsXchange – Sat, Dec 29, 2012 12:20 AM EST
SALT LAKE CITY -- Chris Paul hit two free throws with 3.4 seconds remaining, and Randy Foye's desperation 3-pointer at the buzzer bounced off the rim as the Los Angeles Clippers rallied to stun the Utah Jazz 116-114 Friday night at EnergySolutions Arena. Paul finished with 29 points and six assists, and Blake Griffin added 22 points and 13 rebounds as the Clippers overcame a 19-point, second-half deficit to win their 15th consecutive game. DeAndre Jordan contributed 16 points and 10 rebounds, Caron Butler added 14 points, and Willie Green chipped in with 10 to help the Clippers improve to 24-6. It was Los Angeles' second win this month in Utah. Foye had a season-high 28 points against his former team, but he didn't get the foul he was looking for after Matt Barnes bumped into him on his attempt at the buzzer. Al Jefferson scored 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds, and Gordon Hayward added 17 points off the bench for the Jazz, who fell to 15-16. Utah suffered its third consecutive home defeat, and its sixth loss in eight games. Everything was going the Jazz's way for the first 28 minutes. Paul Millsap hit two free throws to give Utah a 74-55 lead four minutes into the second half. But that's when the Clippers went to work. Matt Barnes began the comeback with a 3-pointer, sparking a 16-2 Clippers run. By the time the third quarter ended, Los Angeles had sliced its deficit to 88-84. Three minutes into the fourth, the Clippers tied it for the first time since early in the game. Butler hit a 3-pointer while being fouled by Hayward, and he completed the four-point play to knot the score at 90-90. The Jazz regained a five-point lead when Alec Burks' reverse layup made it 101-96 with 5:44 remaining. Paul, Griffin and Jordan took over from there, with the Clippers taking their first lead of the second half on a three-point play by Jordan. Jefferson gave Utah the lead back by hitting two foul shots with 1:40 remaining, but Paul answered with two free throws and a jumper with 23.4 seconds to go as the Clippers took a 113-110 lead. The Jazz weren't quite finished, though. Foye hit two free throws, and then Jefferson added a pair after Paul's hit-and-miss trip to the line, tying the game at 114-114 with 17.1 remaining. Jefferson fouled Paul with 3.4 seconds to go while the Clippers guard drove from beyond the arc. Paul's foul shots gave the Clippers their game-winning points. NOTES: The Jazz and Clippers will play again Sunday in Los Angeles. ... Jazz starting point guard Mo Williams remains out indefinitely with a severely sprained right thumb. "It's frustrating to say the least," Williams said. "We're just getting the swelling down." Williams might need another MRI done on his thumb to find out if surgery is required. In the meantime, he continues to wear a brace to protect his thumb. ... Utah coach Tyrone Corbin said he was disappointed to hear about Avery Johnson being fired by the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday. "You go from Coach of the Month to not being there anymore, it's a little difficult," Corbin said. "We wish him well. He's a good guy and he's a hard worker." ... Clippers backup big man Lamar Odom limped off the court in the second quarter, but he returned to action. ... Los Angeles improved to 4-2 on the second night of back-to-back games.
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