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Clippers Blow Big Lead, Fall to Hawks

Posted By Taylor Smith On Jan 2 2011 @ 8:06 pm In Los Angeles Clippers | No Comments

Another day, another blown double-digit lead for the Los Angeles Clippers.

Joe Johnson scored 29 points as the Atlanta Hawks overcame a sizable second half deficit to defeat the Clippers 107-98.

Los Angeles led 31-18 after the first quarter, and 53-42 at the half, only to be outscored by 20 in the second half on the way to their 24th loss of the season.

Blake Griffin scored 31 points and grabbed 15 rebounds, his 21st consecutive double-double (and 27th on the season), but it wasn’t enough for L.A.

Eric Gordon, the team’s leading scorer averaging 23.8 points per game coming into the game, shot just 3-14 from the field (0-5 from three-point range) and scored 10 points. It was Gordon’s second-lowest point total in any game this season.

Jamal Crawford was once again a huge spark off the bench for Atlanta, scoring 24 points on 7-13 shooting in 32 minutes.

Josh Smith contributed 22 points and 10 rebounds after an abysmal offensive first half during which he missed all eight of his shot attempts. Atlanta shot 37 percent in the first half, but finished the game at a 45 percent clip.

The Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan enjoyed his second straight stellar game in the middle, picking up 12 rebounds to go along with six blocked shots. In the last game against Utah, Jordan scored 14 points and nabbed five rebounds to go with seven blocks.

Los Angeles’ energy level was noticeably different in the second half, as Atlanta was able to seemingly score at will down the stretch, while the Clippers struggled to find any consistent offensive option.

The Clippers, the league’s worst free-throw shooting team, shot 20-29 from the stripe. They also turned the ball over 17 times, including several times during key possessions late in the game.

Turnovers and lack of late-game execution have been the Clippers’ undoing all season long, and Sunday was no different.

Los Angeles shot just 4-18 from three-point territory, while Atlanta was 8-18.

The Clippers will host the Denver Nuggets at Staples Center Wednesday night.

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