The Portland Trail Blazers won a thriller over the Los Angeles Clippers 116-112 in overtime Thursday night.
The Trail Blazers were led by LaMarcus Aldridge, who scored 32 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out four assists. Nicolas Batum and Wesley Matthews each had 19 while Robin Lopez finished with 11 points and 15 rebounds.
The Clippers’ stars were absolutely fantastic. Chris Paul had 34 points, 16 assists, six steals and three rebounds and Blake Griffin had 35 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks. Jamal Crawford finished with 21 points. DeAndre Jordan had only two points and fouled out, but grabbed 19 rebounds.
The Trail Blazers took a 91-80 lead when Damian Lillard answered a Paul three with one of his own. To answer, the Clippers immediately went on an 11-0 run which started and ended with Crawford three-pointers. A Griffin three and a Darren Collison layup were sandwiched in between. The two teams went back-and-forth on the next couple of possessions before the Clippers took a 97-96 lead on a Paul jumper. Aldridge answered with a tip-in and Paul answered with another jumper with just 40.2 seconds to play. After knocking the ball away from Alrdridge, Paul hit another jumper with 9.3 seconds to go, giving the Clippers a 101-98 lead with 9.3 seconds to play. On the ensuing possession, Batum came off an Aldridge screen and nailed a three to tie the game. Paul missed at the buzzer and the game went to overtime.
In overtime, Alrdidge was the superstar who took over. He scored seven points in the extra frame. The teams kept trading baskets and exchanging one point leads, but Griffin couldn’t finish on a great look from Paul with 30 seconds to play. Matt Barnes fouled Batum and he hit both free throws. On the next possession, Crawford was forced off of the three-point line and was fouled on his way to the hoop, but only made one of two free throws. Matthews hit two free throws on the other end to ice the game.
The difference in the game came at the three-point line and the free throw line where the Trail Blazers outscored the Clippers by 28.
The Trail Blazers improve to 24-5 while the Clippers fall to 20-11.