LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers battled back-and-forth throughout the fourth quarter of an overtime game Sunday that sent the NBA-worst Clippers to a fifth straight loss and sent their playoff hopes over the finish line.
Kobe Bryant’s 31 points, a career-high 33 rebounds and 15 assists and a career high-tying eight blocks made it a three-point game for the Lakers with less than three minutes to play, as Los Angeles overcame a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit and a Clippers lead of 21 points to beat the Los Angeles-area franchise that won the 1995 NBA title.
“I’m just happy to be a part of it,” said Bryant, who finished with 20 points.
“It’s a great team.
Paul Pierce scored a season-high 27 points, and Blake Griffin added 16 points and 11 rebounds, helping the Clippers hold off a fourth-round playoff opponent that had already dropped three straight games. “
Just to be able to take that step forward and play that way, it’s a nice feeling.”
Paul Pierce scored a season-high 27 points, and Blake Griffin added 16 points and 11 rebounds, helping the Clippers hold off a fourth-round playoff opponent that had already dropped three straight games.
The Lakers have won seven straight over the Clippers, but the Clippers haven’t won since March 12, 2006, a season in which the Lakers beat the Clippers by three points at Staples Center.
“We’ve been playing great basketball, playing against some of the best teams in the league, and we’ve just got to continue to work and keep getting better,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said.
“This team, I thought, was a little rusty.
They’re a really good team, and they’re a good defensive team.”
The Lakers had a chance to extend their lead with 2:22 remaining in the fourth but were unable to capitalize on their 12-point second-quarter lead.
Los Angeles led 81-79 at halftime, when Bryant hit a 3-pointer that was blocked by Griffin and then Griffin blocked a three by Bryant that was fouled by Clippers center DeAndre Jordan.
“They just weren’t able to make any of the shots that they were capable of,” Rivers said of the Clippers.
“The way they played the first quarter, they played great defense.”
The Clippers, who trailed by 17 points in the third quarter, went ahead with 5:07 remaining before Jordan’s 3-point attempt hit the rim.
Jordan made two free throws, including one with 11 seconds left that cut Los Angeles’ lead to 83-83.
The Clippers then tied the game at 87-86 when Jordan hit a jumper with 2.5 seconds left.
“As I said, we’re not going to take any shortcuts, we just have to get back to playing our game,” Jordan said.
Paul Pierce added 16 rebounds and nine assists for Los Angeles, which shot 48 percent in the first half, the best in the NBA.
Los Angeles made 11 of 14 3-pointers in the opening period, including a pair of 3s by Bryant with 2 minutes left.
The win was the Clippers’ seventh in the past eight games.
Los Castros had an 18-3 run to open the third, but they were outscored 23-7 in the period and missed 10 of their first 12 shots.
The team shot just 31.5 percent in its first seven games, but its 11 turnovers tied for the second-highest total in the West.
The teams split the first two meetings, which both ended in ties.
Los Clips coach Mike Brown said his team needed to focus on being better defensively and that the team wasn’t a factor offensively.
“Our guys were just really bad from the perimeter,” Brown said.
Los Lakers forward Steve Blake (31) drives past Clippers forward Blake Griffin (8) in the second quarter of a game between the Los Castro and Los Los Angeles Los Angeles Castros at Staples Arena in Los Angeles on Sunday, March 12.
Los Clippers guard Blake Griffin scored 18 points in a 114-111 win.
Los Angels forward LaMarcus Aldridge (5) drives against Clippers forward DeAndre King (11) in overtime of a NBA basketball game Sunday, April 15, 2017, in Los Angles, Calif.
Los Los Castrones won their fourth straight.
Los Chinos led by 12 at the half and never trailed in the final three quarters, led by a 12-0 run early in the quarter.
The Clips outscorched the Lakers 59-40 in the paint, scoring 31 first-half points and hitting a career best eight 3-points.
Los Dodgers center-fielder Alex Rodriguez (16) shoots during the first inning of a baseball game between Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants at Dodger Stadium in Los Los California, Calif., on Saturday, May 6, 2018.
Los Amigos pitcher Hector Olivera (31), center, celebrates his winning run against the San Antonio Missions at Busch Stadium in Busch, Texas, on Friday, May 8, 2018, in Busches Lake, Texas.
The Los Amigeos were the