The Toronto Raptors concluded their five-game Western Conference road trip Friday night as they took on the Los Angeles Clippers. As the game got underway, both teams were trading baskets but then the Clippers started to take over. Led by Blake Griffin, the Clippers jumped out to a double digit lead early in the second quarter and carried a 16-point cushion into the second half.
The Clippers would continue to add to their lead, which led to Raptors Head Coach Dwane Casey changing his strategy. Trailing by 22, the Raptors tried the "hack-a-Jordan" throughout most of the third quarter, intentionally fouling center DeAndre Jordan by sending him to the free throw line. It would help decrease the Clippers lead a little bit and would slow down the pace of the game which helped the Raptors.
The Raptors continued to claw back in the game and it looked as if they could maybe overcome another large deficit. However, a lack of rebounding and offensive execution was ultimately their downfall as they couldn't do enough to take over the lead.
The Raptors fall to 26-24 with the loss. They have lost two in a row and three of their last four and they finish their five-game Western Conference road trip with a 2-3 record.
The Clippers move to 35-18 and put an end to their two-game losing streak. They sweep the season series against the Raptors.
Points By Quarter
Here are some notes from the game:
- Blake Griffin led the Clippers with 36 points and eight rebounds. He finished the game 13-18 from the field and 10-13 from the free throw line. 19 of Griffin's points came in the first quarter. Griffin becomes the first Clipper since the team moved to Los Angeles to score 35 points in three straight games.
- DeAndre Jordan, who was intentionally fouled most of the third quarter, finished the game 10-22 from the free throw line. Jordan had 18 points and 13 rebounds on the night.
- Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan also had 36 points to go along with eight assists and five rebounds. He was 9-21 from the field and a career-high 17-19 from the free throw line.
- Jonas Valanciunas picked up his team-leading 18th double-double of the season as he recorded 11 points and 13 rebounds. Valanciunas had a rough night defensively and shot an abysmal 3-9 from the free throw line.
- The rebounding differential was only 45-44 in favour of the Clippers, but that doesn't tell the story of the game. The Raptors would get stops on the defensive end late in the game, but allowed the Clippers to control the glass which led to second chance opportunities.
- Raptors guard Terrence Ross, who scored 51 points in the first meeting between the teams, finished with nine points on 3-10 shooting. Ross dealt with foul trouble throughout the game, as well as an eye irritation.
NEXT GAME: Monday, February 10 vs. New Orleans Pelicans. 7 pm. ET start.
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