Doc's Clippers come away with 96-88 victory over C's

Doc's Clippers come away with 96-88 victory over C's
December 11, 2013, 10:15 pm
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Jordan Crawford and the Celtics lost to another familiar foe, Doc Rivers and the Clippers.

(USA Today Sports Images)

BOSTON — Another familiar face, another familiar result as the Celtics lost 96-88 to the Los Angeles Clippers in Doc Rivers' return to the Garden.

Chris Paul led the Clippers with 22 points, nine assists and seven rebounds while Blake Griffin had 18 points and seven rebounds.

It was the second time in as many nights the current collection of Celtics had to face a blast from their not-so-distant past.

On Tuesday, it was the Brooklyn Nets defeating the Celtics (10-14) with contributions coming from many, including former Celtics Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who were both traded to Brooklyn this past summer.

As for the loss Wednesday, Boston chipped away at the Clippers' fourth-quarter lead, getting it down to just two (83-81) following a free throws by Jeff Green.

The Clippers then responded with an 8-2 run capped off by a 3-pointer from Jamal Crawford.

Boston called a time-out with 2:10 to play, but could never get any closer than five points for the remainder of the game.

The Celtics had a strong showing in the first half, but the Clippers were the more physical, more aggressive team beginning with the third quarter.

It paid off as Los Angeles eventually took its first lead in the second half with a 3-pointer from Willie Green that made it a 51-49 game.

Both teams would swap the leads for the rest of the quarter which ended with the Clippers clinging to a 66-64 lead.

The first quarter was a nip-and-tuck affair with neither leading by more than five points. Boston managed to squeak out a 23-20 lead.

Boston began to put some distance between themselves and the Clippers, leading by as many as eight points before settling on a 46-39 lead at the half.

A big part of Boston's success in the first half was Brandon Bass who had 15 points and eight rebounds. He would finish with 17 points and 12 rebounds for his second double-double this season.