On a night where the NBA’s newest duo were introduced to the Los Angeles crowd, it was the supporting cast that shined on both sides of the court. The Los Angeles Clippers improved to 9-1 at home and 10-5 overall after coming back from 10 points down late in the 4th quarter against the Boston Celtics.
Patrick Beverly played his usual chaotic defence whilst grabbing a career high 16 rebounds, and hitting two clutch 3 pointers to ice the game in overtime. Reigning 6th Man of the Year Lou Williams added 27 points of his own, while Paul George added 25 and Kawhi Leonard had 16. Injury and rehab had prevented the two Clipper superstars from taking the court together for the first 14 games. While the pair shared some highlight plays throughout the game, with 5 turnovers a piece, it will take time for the pair to gel together.
From Kawhi’s epic dunk on Daniel Theis to Jayson Tatum crossing Paul George for the game tying bucket, this game had everything with Chauncey Billups referring to it as “what professional basketball should be”. Although it was wildly sloppy, had a total of 40 turnovers and had players quite literally scrambling for loose balls on the floor, that is exactly what makes the modern game so entertaining.
On the Celtics side of the floor, Jayson Tatum really stood out as their key player. He had 30 points on 50% FG and 50% from 3, including the game tying bucket to send the game to overtime. Their bench however lacked the scoring they’ve had this season, being outplayed 43-29.
The Playoff Atmosphere in Staples didn’t taper off after the 4th quarter ended with the scores tied 97-97. Overtime saw Pat Beverly singlehandedly will his team to victory through effort, rebounding and making plays on and off the ball. He then hit a 3-pointer in front of the Clippers bench to send the Los Angeles fans into a frenzy and quieting the large contingent of Celtics fans in the stands.
If both these teams end up sharing their first finals series together in late June, we might be in for a 7 game series for the ages.