LOS ANGELES, United States, Jan 6 – Montrezl Harrell scored 34 points off the bench to lead a trio of Los Angeles Clippers players scoring more than 30 in a bounce-back NBA victory Sunday over New York.
Paul George and Lou Williams added 32 points each as the Clippers won 135-132, erasing the sour taste left by a home loss to the lowly Memphis Grizzlies 24 hours earlier.
It marked the first time in the club’s 50-year history that three players scored at least 30 points.
“History is good, I guess,” said Clippers coach Doc Rivers, although he was still dissatisfied with his team’s defensive effort.
“Have we ever won a game where the other team shot 57 percent — 132 points, I’m more upset about that than happy,” Rivers said.
However, he found something to like in the Clippers’ fightback from a 16-point first-quarter deficit.
Reserves Harrell and Williams played a key role in the reversal, Williams scoring 18 points in the second quarter and Harrell 14 as the Clippers took a 76-69 halftime lead.
“Our second unit came in, they played defense, they got the stops and then Lou caught fire,” said George, who returned to action after missing Saturday’s game with a tight left hamstring.
George said he and Patrick Beverley, back after missing three games with a sore right wrist, were inspired by the bench performance.
“We knew what we had to do,” he said.
George fouled out with 7:06 left to play and the Clippers up by 11.
The Knicks promptly scored eight straight points, and New York were again within three after Marcus Morris’s floater with 10.4 seconds remaining.
Williams then made two free throws that proved decisive for the Clippers, who improved to 26-12 and are fourth in the Western Conference.