NBA Game Summary - LA Clippers at Phoenix
(Friday, April 15th)
Final Score: Phoenix 98, LA Clippers 91
Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Amare Stoudemire posted game-highs of 24 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Phoenix Suns over the Los Angeles Clippers, 98-91, at America West Arena.
Joe Johnson and Shawn Marion added 20 points apiece for the Western Conference-leading Suns, who have won 12 of their last 15 games to improve to 60-19 -- the first time since the 1992-93 season that they have posted 60 wins.
"It's great," Johnson said. "I don't think I have had sixty wins if you add up all of my three years I have been in the league."
Phoenix also extended its conference lead over idle San Antonio to two games. Both teams have three games remaining.
Elton Brand collected 22 points and nine rebounds to lead the Clippers, who have lost three of four. Chris Kaman added 21 points and Bobby Simmons scored 14 in the loss.
The Clippers led by as many as 14 points in the game, but scored just two in the final 5:33 -- a layup by Kaman that tied the game at 91-91 with 4:28 remaining.
Jim Jackson then hit a three-pointer with three minutes left that gave Phoenix a 94-91 lead.
Marko Jaric airballed a three-pointer for the Clippers with 18.6 seconds remaining, and the Suns went on to score the final four points of the game on two free throws apiece from Steve Nash and Stoudemire.
"It wasn't exactly what we wanted," Clippers head coach Mike Dunleavy said of Jaric's shot. "There were secondary options on it, so I thought it was a bad shot. Sometimes you make bad decisions."
Nash finished with 14 points and 11 assists for Phoenix, which has clinched home-court advantage over every team in the NBA except for San Antonio.
The Suns won despite being outshot 48 percent to 38 percent.
The Clippers shot 54 percent and led by as many as 14 points in the first half, but held just a 57-56 edge at the break.
Johnson scored eight of his 15 first half points during a 23-10 run that got Phoenix within one point at halftime.
The Suns went 62-20 in 1992-93 and advanced to the NBA Finals, where they lost in six games to the Chicago Bulls...Phoenix guard Quentin Richardson missed his second straight game with a left ankle sprain...LA was again without head coach Mike Dunleavy, who has left the team indefinitely to be with his ill father...Phoenix swept the regular-season series (4-0) with the Clippers for the first time since the 1999-2000 season. The Suns went 8-0 against LA teams this season (4-0 vs. Lakers)...Marion picked up his 53rd double-double of the season, and Stoudemire got his 26th...The Suns were 9-of-27 on three-pointers, while LA went just 1-of-6.
04/16 01:41:43 ET