The Los Angeles Clippers got their leading scorer back, and not a moment too soon.
Eric Gordon, playing in his first game since January 22, scored a team-high 24 points as the Clippers downed the hot Houston Rockets 106-103 at Staples Center Wednesday night.
The win snapped a five-game losing streak for the Clippers, while Houston’s five-game winning streak came to an end, as well.
Nine of Gordon’s 24 came within the final five minutes of the game, including a three-pointer with 4:46 to go that put L.A. ahead for good.
A win for the Rockets would’ve put them one game over .500 for the first time all season, but it was not to be.
Kyle Lowry led Houston with 24 points and 11 assists.
One key for the Clippers was shutting down the offensively-efficient Kevin Martin. Martin, averaging a team-best 23.2 points per game this season, was limited to just 12 points on subpar 4-15 shooting from the floor.
The Clippers dominated Houston on the glass, outrebounding the Rockets 51-39 and taking advantage of their major size advantage.
Speaking of size, former All-Star center Chris Kaman played what was likely his best game of the season for Los Angeles, finishing with 21 points and nine rebounds in 23 minutes off-the-bench.
His offensive output was likely the difference in the game for the Clippers, as he was scoring bucket-after-bucket throughout the second half, while the Rockets had no answer.
The Rockets led 54-49 at the half, but were outscored 26-15 in the third quarter. Considering the Clippers’ woes in third quarters this season, this came as a bit of a surprise.
Blake Griffin scored 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, while DeAndre Jordan enjoyed his most productive game in quite some time, chipping in with eight points, 16 rebounds and three blocked shots.
Newcomers Mo Williams and Jamario Moon, playing in their first home games for the Clippers since coming over from the Cleveland Cavaliers before the trade deadline, combined for 21 points. Williams also added 11 assists.
The Clippers will have a few days off before hosting the new-look Denver Nuggets at Staples Center Saturday night, while the Rockets will head home to face the Indiana Pacers the same evening.
About the Author
Written by Taylor Smith
Taylor Smith is a writer for the Los Angeles Clippers.