Blazers beat Clippers 116-112 in OT win

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 27, 2013 at 1:54 am •  Published: December 27, 2013
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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — LaMarcus Aldridge wasn't even sure he was going to play against the Clippers.

Portland's top scorer and rebounder had his wisdom teeth removed on Sunday. So on Thursday night he was still in some pain. Worse, he hadn't had much to eat. But Aldridge came out and had 32 points and 10 rebounds for the Trail Blazers in a 116-112 overtime victory over the Clippers.

"I've had nothing but soup for the last four days," he lamented. "So I was a little worried about my energy levels."

In the end, he didn't even have a turnover as the surprising Blazers upped their record to an NBA-best 24-5. Portland has won seven of their last eight games, and they've dropped just two at home this season.

The Clippers, playing the second of a back-to-back, mounted a challenge after trailing by as many as 11 points in the fourth quarter. Blake Griffin had 35 points and 11 rebounds, while Chris Paul finished with 34 points and 16 assists.

Aldridge hit a fadeaway with 39 seconds left in overtime and Portland went ahead 110-109.

Griffin missed a layup on the other end before Nicolas Batum made a pair of free throws to make it 112-109 with 26.5 seconds to go. After Griffin dunked to narrow it again, Damian Lillard made two free throws for Portland.

Portland clung to a 114-112 lead with 13.4 seconds left and padded it with Wesley Matthews' foul shots. Paul missed a 3-point attempt as time ran out.

Aldridge scored all of Portland's field goals in overtime, and finished with his ninth game this season with at least 25 points and 10 rebounds, second only to Minnesota's Kevin Love.

As for his teeth? "It's a little bit throbbing," he shrugged.

It was the second of back-to-back losses for the Clippers. Earlier Thursday, the NBA said its referees made a mistake when they ejected Griffin in the team's 105-103 loss to the Warriors on Wednesday night.

Griffin got his second technical with 10:43 left after scuffling with Andrew Bogut, following Warriors forward Draymond Green to the showers after they got into it at the end of the third.

"A common foul should have been called on Griffin for initially attempting to dislodge the Warriors' Andrew Bogut and a technical foul should have been assessed to Bogut for grabbing Griffin by the shirt and wrestling with him," Rod Thorn, the NBA's president of basketball operations, said in a statement.

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