NBA: Clippers come back from 22 points down to beat Warriors by 1
Paul George drilled the game-winning three-pointer as the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers rallied from a 22-point third-quarter deficit to stun the Golden State Warriors 113-112 on Saturday.
George finished with a game-high 25 points. Eleven of those came in the fourth quarter, when he finally put the Clippers in the lead, for the first time in the game, with 9.9 seconds remaining, connecting from beyond the arc over a helpless Klay Thompson.
“It felt good as soon as I released it,” said George, who added six rebounds and six assists. “I got a good look at the basket, thank God it went in.”
The Warriors had a final chance, but Draymond Green missed a three-point attempt at the buzzer.
George on Clippers’ comeback
George said the comeback was especially meaningful against the Warriors’ potentially potent offense.
“They can put points up so quick,” he said. “The fact we were able to come back, it just shows a lot — this group is ready to fight and play all the way until the end.”
James Harden added 21 points and Kawhi Leonard chipped in 20 for the Clippers, who withstood 17 three-pointers from the Warriors.
Stephen Curry scored 22 points and handed out 11 assists for Golden State.
NBA: Antetokounmpo triple-double
Elsewhere, Giannis Antetokounmpo’s first triple-double of the season — 32 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists — helped the Milwaukee Bucks finally see off the Atlanta Hawks 132-121 in an NBA game that featured 17 lead changes.
Damian Lillard added 25 points and nine assists for the Bucks, who were tied 114-114 with less than six minutes remaining but out-scored the Hawks 18-7 the rest of the way.
In Brooklyn, Mikal Bridges scored 42 points to pace the Nets, who halted the Orlando Magic’s winning streak at nine games with a 129-101 victory.
Bridges singlehandedly out-scored the Magic in the first quarter, pouring in 26 points as the Nets roared to a 43-22 lead that put them on the road to victory.
The thing that impressed Nets coach Jacque Vaughn about Bridges’s big first quarter was that “nothing was forced.”
“It was in the flow,” Vaughn said. “I thought his teammates around him got him into great position so he could score the basketball and he took advantage of the opportunities that presented themselves.”
Magic gets first loss
The Magic suffered their first defeat since a November 14 loss to the Nets, coming up short in their bid for the first 10-game winning streak in franchise history.
Franz Wagner and Cole Anthony scored 20 points each for the Magic, who trailed by as many as 25 in the first half. They cut the deficit to nine late in the third quarter before the Nets pulled away again.
In Detroit, the Cleveland Cavaliers handed the Pistons a 17th straight defeat, 110-101.
Max Strus and Darius Garland scored 22 points apiece for Cleveland. Donovan Mitchell added 20 and Jarrett Allen chipped in 19 with 11 rebounds to keep the Pistons at bay.
Detroit opened the third quarter of the NBA game on a 10-0 scoring run to grab a 58-54 lead. They led by as many as eight before the Cavs hit back.
The Minnesota Timberwolves pulled off a nail-biting 123-117 victory over the Hornets in Charlotte.
Karl-Anthony Towns led the Timberwolves with 28 points, 10 of them in a fourth quarter that saw the lead change hands six times.
Rudy Gobert added 26 points and 12 rebounds for Minnesota, whose 15-4 record is tied with the Boston Celtics for best in the league.
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