Chris Paul dominated the final two minutes, to lead the Los Angeles Clippers to a 87-86 win over the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 3 of their first round NBA playoff series. The Clippers have a 2-1 series lead, thanks to Paul leading a late comeback.
Paul scored 22 points, had 11 assists, and four steals, and had a three-possession sequence that gave the Clippers the lead. WIth the score tied at 80-80, Paul hit a fallaway jumper to give the Clippers the lead with 2:02 remaining, then stole the ball from Marc Gasol on the next possession. Down on the other end of the court, Paul found Blake Griffin with a no-look pass for a slam dunk and a four-point Clippers advantage.
Game 3 was a contest full of runs. The Clippers used an 18-1 run from the end of the first quarter into the second quarter to take a 13-point lead. But Memphis responded with an immediate 13-0 run to tie the game. The Clippers led by four points at halftime, but the Grizzlies used an 11-0 run in the third quarter to seize the lead, their first since late in the first period.
After falling behind by eight points in the final seconds of the third quarter, the Clippers cut the deficit to two points with a 6-0 run but weren't able to complete the comeback until Randy Foye hit a three-pointer with 3:13 remaining.
The Clippers ended the game on a 12-7 run and outscored Memphis 23-15 in the fourth quarter. Rudy Gay hit a pair of late three-pointers to keep the Grizzlies close, but missed a wild potential game-winner at the buzzer.
The Clippers had to overcome shooting just 13-of-30 from the free throw line (43.3%), while the Grizzlies were 30-of-39 from the line (76.9%). Gay was instrumental in the Grizzlies' 17-point free throw advantage as he was 12-of-15 from the charity stripe en route to 24 points.
Memphis outrebounded the Clippers 40-35 in Game 3. Zach Randolph had 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Grizzlies.
Game 4 will be held Monday night at Staples Center.