Clippers fail to grab rebound in last seconds of game and it cost them big
Orlando- The Los Angles Clippers fall to the Phoenix Suns 117-115 after Devin Booker's buzzer-beater.
Paul George and Kawhi Leonard struggled to find their stroke in the first half of play against the Suns, as they combined for 17 points. The Clippers, who are usually good defending shots behind the arc looked shocked as the Suns shot a sizzling 61.8% from three-point land in the first half. Devin Booker was taking the Clippers to McDonald's and having anything he wanted. Booker scored in transition, mid-range, and kept the Clippers at bay with getting a couple of steals late in the second quarter to stop a mini-run by Los Angles. At the end of the first half, Booker had 17 points and had his team up by seven, 63-56.
In the second half, the Clippers started to have a little bit of urgency on both sides of the floor. George pushed the tempo in the third quarter, got to the foul line, and put his team in position to get within striking distance of the Suns. JaMychal Green was a key factor that stepped up for the Clippers in the second half, as he grabbed offensive rebounds, hustled after loose balls, and scored some big-time buckets down the stretch. With under two minutes left in regulation, Ivica Zubac and Leanard scored back to back baskets to tie the game up. Booker went down the court, called his number, and shot a cold-blooded jumper to go up two. On the ensuing possession, Leanard was fouled and hit both free throws to re-tie the game up. With 20 seconds left, the Clippers tightened up their defense but failed to retrieve the rebound, after the Suns missed a mid-range shot. The ball was thrown out to Booker, who connected on a game-winning shot to send the Clippers packing, 117-115. Booker finished the game with 35 points, 8 assists, and 4 rebounds
Leonard finished with 27 points, 3 assists, and 7 rebounds. Paul George finished with 23 points, 5 assists, and 6 rebounds. Zubac finished the game with 18 points and 12 rebounds.