=== Clippers welcome Kings to Staples Center ===
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Los Angeles Clippers are back home and hope to
rebound from a recent loss Saturday afternoon versus the Sacramento Kings at
The Clippers split their two road games against Minnesota and Oklahoma City,
and suffered a 105-91 loss to Kevin Durant and the Thunder on Thursday. Blake
Griffin led the way with 27 points, 10 rebounds and five assists, while Chris
Paul had his usual double-double with 17 points and 12 assists.
Jamal Crawford added 18 points off the bench for Los Angeles, which had won
five of six games before running into the Thunder and was coming off a win
over the Timberwolves the night before.
"The way we played the last couple games with the ball movement and all that,
that was all gone," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said after the OKC loss. "We
never established any pace. We walked the ball up the floor.
"It may have something to do with last night's game, too. I don't know that.
(But) it was disappointing."
Clippers forward Matt Barnes will undergo surgery to repair a retinal tear in
his left eye and will be out approximately two weeks.
Paul has a double-double in each of his first 13 games this season, matching a
career-best dating back to April 17. The 13 games with 10-plus points and 10
or more assists to start a season is an NBA record.
Griffin has 20-plus points and 10-plus rebounds in 10 of his last 12 games for
the Clippers, who are 5-1 at home and 4-1 against the Western Conference as
the host. The Clips are second in the NBA with 107.3 points per game, but sit
near the bottom in opponents' scoring at 105.1 ppg.
Los Angeles will also welcome Chicago and New York to Hollywood.
Sacramento is averaging just 96.1 ppg, but has eclipsed the 100-point mark in
each of the last two games -- both wins over the Phoenix Suns.
The Kings completed the home-and-home sweep of the Suns with Wednesday's
113-106 triumph thanks to Isaiah Thomas's 23 points off the bench. DeMarcus
Cousins compiled 19 points with 12 rebounds and Greivis Vasquez chipped in 13
points and six assists for Sacramento, which outscored the Suns at the free
throw line 32-15 and held them to 12 points in the third quarter.
"We played great defense in the third quarter," Cousins said. "(We) gave up a
lot in the fourth but stayed poised and composed and we finished out the
fourth quarter strong."
Phoenix managed to have a 44-39 scoring edge in the final frame.
Thomas has scored 10 or more points in 11 straight games off the bench and
helped the Kings build an 88-68 lead. The Suns, though, closed the gap to
102-96 and couldn't get over the hump.
Sacramento is 1-2 on the road and will also visit the Lakers. The Kings
dropped a 110-101 decision at home to the Clippers on Nov. 1, as Paul ended
with 26 points and 10 assists. Thomas had 29 points and Cousins tallied 24
points and 10 boards for the Kings, who have lost 10 of the past 12 meetings
with the Clippers.
Sacramento has lost five straight, seven of eight and nine of its last 11
games at the Clippers.
11/23 10:40:42 ET