Zion back with double-double, Pelicans rout Clippers 112-91

LOS ANGELES (AP) Zion Williamson had 21 points and 12 rebounds in his return, and the New Orleans Pelicans pulled away in the second half to rout the Los Angeles Clippers 112-91 on Sunday.

CJ McCollum added 22 points for the Pelicans, who've won four of their first six games. Williamson was out the last two games with a right hip and lower back contusion, one of three starters to have missed last two games.

Norman Powell had 18 points off the bench for the Clippers. Paul George added 14 points and Marcus Morris had 12. With Kawhi Leonard again sidelined, the Clippers dropped their fourth in a row.

Naji Marshall stole Amir Coffey's bad pass and streaked down court to score in the game's closing minutes, waving goodbye to the Clippers fans who hadn't already bailed out.

Williamson and McCollum combined to score 10 straight to open the third, giving New Orleans a 62-54 lead.

Reggie Jackson scored seven in a row to draw the Clippers within one before the Pelicans got going again. Larry Nance Jr. hit a 3-pointer and Williamson followed with a dunk. Williamson closed the period by completing a three-point play that sent the Pelicans into the fourth leading 78-67.

The Pelicans have been a force in the paint through their first six games, ranking second in the league with 56 points. They had that many against the Clippers.

The Pelicans were 15 of 36 from 3-point range, hitting five in the fourth. The Clippers were just 11 of 39 from long distance.

Trailing by 11 points, the Pelicans outscored the Clippers 17-9 to close the second and pull into a 52-all tie at halftime.

TIP-INS

Pelicans: Starters Herb Jones (right knee hyperextension) and Brandon Ingram (concussion protocols) each missed their third straight game.

Clippers: Leonard missed his fourth game with knee stiffness and he won't play Monday either.

UP NEXT

Pelicans: After two days off, visit the Lakers on Wednesday.

Clippers: Host the Houston Rockets on Monday in the second game of a back-to-back.

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