Doc Rivers: Blame Clippers' Game 2 loss on team, not Blake Griffin

Doc Rivers: Blame Clippers' Game 2 loss on team, not Blake Griffin
Clippers' J.J. Redick grabs his head in disappointment as teammates DeAndre Jordan (6) and Blake Griffin walk off the court after Redick missed a potential game-tying three-pointer in overtime of Game 2 against the Spurs on Wednesday.

(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Blake Griffin took the blame for the Clippers' loss to the San Antonio Spurs in Game 2 of their playoff series, but Clippers Coach Doc Rivers doesn't see it that way.

"This is not boxing," Rivers said before Friday's shootaround in advance of Friday night's Game 3 in San Antonio. "The team loses, and the team wins, and that's how it's always going to be."


With 11.9 seconds left in the fourth quarter and the Clippers up, 94-92, Griffin committed a turnover while dribbling the ball through his legs. The Clippers then fouled Patty Mills, who made both of free throws to send the game into overtime. The Spurs went on to lead by as many as six points in the extra period en route to a 111-107 win.

After the game, Griffin said the loss was his fault.

"You know that game is pretty much 100% on me," Griffin said. "I got the ball and, up two, needed to take care of it, needed to get a good shot or try to get fouled. [Instead] I turned it over, so that game is on me. That's what's on my mind."

Griffin finished the night with 29 points on 12-for-25 shooting, 12 rebounds, 11 assists and five turnovers.

The Clippers could point to many factors other than Griffin's late turnover that contributed to the loss.

They missed 17 of 37 free throws, DeAndre Jordan making only six of his 17 attempts. The Clippers' bench was outscored, 48-17. And the Spurs' Tim Duncan dominated, scoring 28 points on 14-for-23 shooting in Game 2, after having only 11 points on four-for-10 shooting

"The loss is over, No. 1, and it wasn't Blake's fault or anybody else's fault," Rivers. "It was that San Antonio actually played better, and the fact that we had a chance to win, we were almost fortunate. We didn't play great, and when you don't play great you don't win."

Chris Paul said Friday that it wouldn't be hard to move on from that loss. There's still a lot of basketball left to be played, he said.

"It would be real tough to deal with if that were Game 7, and we were done," Paul said.

The Clippers, who won a franchise-best 26 road games this season, including a 20-point win at San Antonio, will play Games 3 and 4 in San Antonio before returning to Los Angeles for Game 5.

Rivers said he and his teammates took Wednesday's loss hard, but were not focused on the past.

"I think they were completely disappointed in losing the other night because it was a home game, they felt like they didn't play as well as they should have," Rivers said. "But by the next day -- it's sports, man -- you're ready, ready to go."

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