Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) – Blake Griffin had his double-double streak snapped, but scored 21 of his game-high 29 points in the first half to carry the Clippers to a 126-111 drubbing of the Timberwolves.
The anticipated matchup between Griffin and Minnesota’s Kevin Love was one- sided, with the rookie dominating in the opening half to give the Clips a double-digit cushion they never relinquished.
Griffin pulled down eight rebounds, ending his run of double-doubles at 27, and the backcourt combination of Eric Gordon and Baron Davis carried Los Angeles in the second half for its sixth win in seven games.
Gordon, who suffered a ligament injury to his right ring finger in the first quarter, netted 18 of his 23 points in the final 24 minutes, while Davis added 20 points in the lopsided win.
“It’s very painful. It might be torn or strained. I’ll tape it up tighter. I’m going to keep playing through it,” said Gordon on the injury.
Love put up most of his stats when the game was out of reach, logging 26 points and 11 rebounds in the loss, Minnesota’s third straight and eighth in nine games. The Timberwolves shot 1-for-16 from three-point range.
“We made too many mistakes…The Clippers are playing better basketball,” Love said.
Griffin, coming off a 47-point effort against the Pacers on Monday, came out of the gates unhinged with 14 first-quarter points, including his fifth three- ball of the season in the closing seconds that gave the hosts a 29-19 lead.
The margin stayed in double digits through most of the second quarter, and hosts led 60-48 at the break.
A Michael Beasley jumper cut Minnesota’s deficit to 85-76 with 1:44 remaining in the third, but the Clippers scored the next seven points and led 92-79 heading to the fourth.
Gordon finished off an 11-2 spurt with a three-pointer midway through the frame, giving the Clippers an insurmountable 113-91 advantage.
Los Angeles has won six straight at home, its longest since the 2006-07 season…Beasley scored 21 points before getting ejected in the fourth quarter…Love has 29 straight double-doubles…Ryan Gomes tallied 13 points and eight rebounds, while DeAndre Jordan logged 11 and 12 for LA.
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