If you didn’t know better, you would have thought the Boston Celtics were playing their second game in as many nights – not the Clippers – by the way things got so out of hand.
The Clippers, who dropped an overtime game in Boston last month, had no problem in evening up the head-to-head series with a dominant 114-90 win over the Celtics.
With the loss, Boston (43-31) had their four-game losing streak snapped. The Celtics’ loss coupled with a win by the Miami Heat now has Boston down to the No. 5 spot in the East while the Heat (43-30) move a half-game ahead of Boston.
This was a game that the Los Angeles took control of early in the game. Setting the tone for the Clippers was Chris Paul who had a double-double in the first half. He finished the game with 13 points and 14 assists.
And center DeAndre Jordan was a dominant force at both ends of the floor, finishing with 15 points, 13 rebounds and three blocked shots.
One of the game’s scariest moments came in the second quarter when former Celtic Paul Pierce came down awkwardly on his right leg following a driving lay-up with about two minutes to play in the half.
He eventually rose to his feet and went to the locker room under his own power. Team officials later said Pierce would not return due to a bruised right knee and a right ankle sprain.
Before the injury, Pierce had eight points on 4-for-6 shooting with three rebounds.
There was very little for the Celtics to feel good about following one of their most decisive losses this season.
One of the few positives was Isaiah Thomas once again leading the way for Boston scoring.
He tied a franchise record with Larry Bird for the most consecutive games (13) of being the team’s outright leading scorer.
Thomas led the Celtics with 24 points with Avery Bradley and Marcus Smart each chipping in 13 points. Jared Sullinger had a near double-double with nine points and 11 rebounds.
Boston will have Tuesday off and return to practice on Wednesday prior to their next game on Thursday at Portland.