NBA: LA Clippers outmuscle Wolves in 96-90 victory
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Los Angeles Clippers don’t take kindly to being pushed around.
Blake Griffin had 26 points and 13 rebounds, and DeAndre Jordan added 16 points and 12 boards to lift the Los Angeles Clippers to a 96-90 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night.
Caron Butler had 19 points and Jamal Crawford scored 17 for the Clippers.
Nikola Pekovic had 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who had coach Rick Adelman on the sideline for the first time since Jan. 5. Adelman missed the previous 11 games while his wife sought treatment for seizures.
Tempers flared in the first half when Matt Barnes was ejected and Wolves center Greg Stiemsma floored Grant Hill. But the Clippers got physical and handed the Wolves their fifth straight loss.
The Wolves went 2-9 in Adelman’s absence. But the downtrodden team played with much more confidence with their leader back on the bench.
J.J. Barea and Alexey Shved led an 8-2 burst that tied the game and Andriei Kirilenko’s transition layup gave Minnesota an 86-84 lead with four minutes to go.
But the Clippers got a big 3-pointer from Butler and knocked the smaller Wolves to the court for several loose balls. Griffin muscled home a three-point play with 30 seconds to go to close the game out.
Barea had 14 points and Shved 12.
The Clippers entered the game having lost four of their last five and looking a little disjointed without star point guard Chris Paul, who is out with a knee injury.