Clippers take 96-86 victory over Bulls after fourth-quarter surge

Clippers take 96-86 victory over Bulls after fourth-quarter surge
Clippers forward Spencer Hawes tries to work past Chicago Bulls forward Mike Dunleavy during the first half of the Clippers' 96-86 win Sunday. (Tannen Maury / European Pressphoto Agency)

The Clippers won their second game in a row, beating the Chicago Bulls on Sunday, 96-86.

The Clippers and the Bulls entered the fourth quarter tied at 69. The Clippers then went on a 10-2 run to take an eight-point lead with just over three minutes remaining, 88-80, after Chris Paul made two free throws. They extended that lead to as much as 11 points as the Clippers outscored the Bulls in the quarter, 27-17.

Nikola Mirotic scored all but one of the Bulls' points in the fourth quarter, finishing with a career-high 29 points off the bench.

With the win, the Clippers moved up to fifth place from sixth in the Western Conference with a record of 39-21. The Bulls (37-23) are in fourth place in the East.

The Clippers outshot the Bulls from the field, 43.7% to 31%, and outrebounded them, 55-51.

DeAndre Jordan had 26 rebounds, marking his eighth game with 20 or more rebounds -- the most such games in a season by a Clippers player since Michael Cage had nine in 1987-88. Jordan had 17 boards in the first half, the most rebounds in a half in the NBA this season, helping the Clippers take a 43-41 lead into the third quarter.

Chris Paul led the Clippers with 28 points and 12 assists. Jamal Crawford had all 16 of his points in the second half.

The teams were each playing without their star players.

Clippers power forward Blake Griffin remained sidelined after having surgery Feb. 9 to remove a staph infection from his right elbow. The Bulls were without point guard Derrick Rose, after the team announced Tuesday that he tore the medial meniscus in his right knee for the second time in 15 months and would require surgery. The Bulls were also without power forward Taj Gibson, who has a hurt ankle.

Bulls shooting guard/small forward Jimmy Butler played just under 22 minutes before he had to leave the game in the third quarter because of a sprained left elbow.

The Clippers only have one game remaining on their four-game trip, against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Monday. They split the first two games of the trip, losing to the Houston Rockets on Wednesday, 110-105, before beating the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday, 97-79.