|Los Angeles Clippers' Caron Butler descends after making a dunk during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers in Los Angeles, Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)|
Clippers beat Lakers 102-94 behind 33 by Paul
LOS ANGELES—Chris Paul scored 33 points, Blake Griffin had 22 points and 14 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Clippers led all the way in beating the Lakers 102-94 on Saturday night despite 42 points by Kobe Bryant.
Chauncey Billups added 19 points, former Laker Caron Butler had 13 points and DeAndre Jordan had 10 rebounds in the Clippers' second win in four days over one of the NBA's elite teams.
The Clippers beat Miami 95-89 in overtime on Wednesday and have won five of their last six. Paul limped off after hitting a jumper in the final minutes.
Bryant notched his fourth straight game of 40 or more points but the Lakers had their five-game winning streak snapped by their Staples Center co-tenants, who beat them twice in the preseason.
The Lakers got no closer than five points early in the fourth quarter as the visiting team. Bryant broke out for 21 points in the third, but he was limited to 10 in the fourth against the Clippers' double teams.
Billups and Paul hit consecutive 3-pointers to help the Clippers extend their lead to 67-53 midway through the third.
Bryant took over from there, scoring 17 of the Lakers' final 19 points of the quarter to close to 76-72. He began and ended the spurt with 3-pointers and in between hit 7 of 8 free throws while the Clippers were held to nine points over the final 5 minutes.
The Clippers' biggest first-half lead was 55-42 at the break. They outshot and outrebounded the Lakers, who were better in the paint.
The Lakers twice closed within three points in the second quarter, but the Clippers outscored them 16-6 to end the period, with Billups, Paul and Griffin combining for 14 points.
The Clippers opened the game on a 13-4 run, then outscored the Lakers 13-9 to lead after the first quarter. Things got chippy in the final 12 seconds when Darius Morris went up for a basket after Paul was whistled for a foul and Griffin pushed off him with both hands as Morris came down.
Lakers coach Mike Brown got incensed and was called for a technical, while nothing was called on Griffin. Morris had the last word, though, when he sank a jumper from before the half-court line at the buzzer as Paul tried to cut him off. Metta World Peace and Grififin also had technicals.
Notes: Clippers F Brian Cook left midway through the second quarter with a sprained left ankle. ... The Clippers improved to 5-1 at home and 6-0 this season when taking a lead into the fourth. ... The Clippers have sold out all six of their home games. ... The Lakers were playing their fifth game of the week and their 14th of the season, tying Chicago for most games played. ... The Clippers have played just nine games, fewest in the league. ... Clippers backup G Mo Williams missed the game because of an injured right foot that he hurt on Tuesday at Portland. ... Lakers G Jason Kapono is adjusting to sleepless nights after his wife gave birth to premature twin girls named Campbell and Isla earlier in the week. "Thirty minutes is like three hours. It's all been a blur," he said.