Griffin, Dudley lead Clippers over Bobcats, 112-85

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 2, 2014 at 12:13 am •  Published: January 2, 2014
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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Consistent and timely perimeter shooting by Blake Griffin and Jared Dudley, along with a season-high 36 assists, helped the Los Angeles Clippers to a satisfying start to 2014 following their most lopsided defeat of the season.

Griffin scored 13 of his 31 points in the final 7:05 and Dudley got 11 of his 20 points in the third quarter, leading the defending Pacific Division champions to a 112-85 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night.

"Dud is a shooter. Every time I see him shoot it, I think it's going in, so we're going to keep feeding him like that," Clippers point guard Chris Paul said. "It's all about confidence. We also have the utmost confidence in Blake. He works so hard, and it was great to see it all come together for him tonight. That was unreal. They didn't know what to do."

Dudley faced his second former team in two games, making seven of 10 shots against the club that selected him with their first pick in 2007 and traded him to Phoenix after one season. He had nine points against the Suns on Monday in the Clippers' 107-88 loss.

"For me, to see the ball go in once or twice, it breeds confidence," said Dudley, who came in shooting a career-worst 44 percent from the field. "I've just got to be aggressive, and obviously make shots. I know when I play well, our team usually plays well. When you move the ball from side to side, it opens things up more. Sometimes when I do score, it just gives the other guys the confidence to do other things. But when I'm not shooting the ball well, I have to do all the little things."

Paul had 17 points and 14 assists, helping the Clippers beat the Bobcats for the sixth straight time and send them to their 17th straight road loss against Western Conference opponents.

"We had 36 assists tonight, and you could see what we worked on yesterday at practice with ball movement," coach Doc Rivers said. "It was quick. The ball was flying around the floor, and that makes us really good. It makes it harder to guard Chris and Blake because you can't key on those guys. I think we got away from that a little bit, so it's good that that came back tonight."

Al Jefferson and Kemba Walker each scored 14 points for the Bobcats, whose previous six losses all were decided by five points or fewer.

"Those guys played really well," Walker said. "They picked up their defense, made us take tough shots, and we weren't able to make them. On the offensive end, they moved the ball really well, shared the ball and made shots. We just couldn't get over the hump in the second half."

Dudley jump-started the Clippers in the third quarter with a 3-pointer and a 22-footer, and they pulled away to a 75-62 lead on DeAndre Jordan's tip-in with 6:19 left in the third quarter.

Dudley opened the fourth with another 3 to give Los Angeles an 84-69 cushion. But as hot as he was at the time, Dudley passed up a 3-point shot and drove the lane before dishing off to Ryan Hollins for a layup that resulted in a three-point play and an 87-71 advantage with 10:05 left.



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