The Heat were in town, but the Clippers were hot.
Los Angeles shot a sizzling 77 percent in the first quarter on their way to a 44-26 lead, and never looked back.
The Heat actually outscored the Clippers in each of the final three quarters, but the first quarter deficit was too large to overcome.
Blake Griffin finished with 24 points, 14 rebounds and six assists, good for his 24th consecutive double-double and 30th overall this season. Eric Gordon led L.A. with 26 points on 8-15 shooting from the field.
Miami had streaks of nine straight wins and 13 straight road wins snapped with the loss.
The superb play of Baron Davis set the tone early for Los Angeles, as he was able to take advantage of his favorable matchup with Carlos Arroyo on his way to 20 points and nine assists, including 10 points and four dimes in the first quarter alone.
The Clippers led 20-17 around the five minute mark of the first period before putting on an incredible offensive display to close out the quarter.
Los Angeles kicked it into high-gear the rest of the way with a dizzying display of dunks, layups and three-pointers to outscore the Heat 24-9 in the final five minutes.
Another key to success for the Clippers was limiting the offensive effectiveness of Miami’s supporting cast.
Outside of Dwyane Wade (31 points), LeBron James (27) and Chris Bosh (26), only one other Heat player (Mario Chalmers) scored more than four points. Bosh shot just 6-17 from the floor, but went 13-14 from the free-throw line.
The Clippers’ bench outscored Miami’s bench 25-15, and made all three of their three-point attempts.
Miami was able to get within two late in the fourth quarter, but L.A. then scored six straight to effectively put the Heat away.
The Heat made eight threes in the game, but also took 27 of them. The Clippers were the fourth team this season to shoot at least 50 percent from the field against Miami.
The loss dropped the Heat to 30-10 on the year, and it was their first loss on the road since November 27th in Dallas.
The Clippers have now won eight of their last 11 games, and stand at 13-24 for the season. Those “dragon slaying” Clippers can now add Miami to a list of impressive wins this season that already included Oklahoma City, San Antonio, New Orleans, Chicago and Denver.
Miami will now take their talents to the Mile High City to face the Nuggets Thursday night, while the Clippers will be in Oakland to face the Warriors on Friday.
About the Author
Written by Taylor Smith
Taylor Smith is a writer for the Los Angeles Clippers.