J.J. Redick says Clippers must play Game 4 with 'sense of desperation'

J.J. Redick says Clippers must play Game 4 with 'sense of desperation'
Clippers guardJ.J. Redick has his shot challenged by Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard in Game 3 of their first-round playoff series in San Antonio on April 24. (Darren Abate / Associated Press)

The Clippers trail the five-time NBA champion San Antonio Spurs in their first-round playoff series, 2-1, with Game 4 set for Sunday at 12:30 p.m. PDT in San Antonio

Before Saturday's practice, J.J. Redick did not mince words about how crucial it is for the Clippers to win Game 4.

"In this situation, you have to play with a sense of desperation," Redick said. "You never want to go down 3-1 and be facing elimination in three straight games. That's tough to overcome. Whatever our game plan is, whatever X's and O's we have tomorrow, the most important thing is just to play with desperation."

The Spurs routed the Clippers in Game 3, leading by as many as 37 points in their 100-73 win. It was the fewest points that the Clippers have scored all season long. In the third quarter, the Clippers were held to just 11 points as Kawhi Leonard single-handedly outscored them with 13 points.

"They've been in our airspace," Redick said. "They've really taken away the flow of our offense with the switches they've done, so it's been a challenge for us to score. You have to give them credit, and we have to be better."

In Friday's game, Chris Paul had more turnovers (six) than assists (four) for the first time this season. It took Blake Griffin 15 shots to score 14 points, which was the team high. Redick made only two of his seven shots. Paul made only three of his 11 shots. Jamal Crawford made only one of his 11 shots.

"Part of getting past last night is you have to have short-term memory, it's a quick turnaround," Redick said.

Redick said the Clippers still believe they can win the series, considering that they led by as many as 20 points and won by 15 points in Game 1, and that Game 2 was sent to overtime.


"I can say we're positive and mentally we're in a good place," Redick said. "We're not by any means in a sense of we've given up on the series, or we can't beat these guys. We've proven that we can beat them, but we have to be better to do that, though."

Redick said the Spurs' efficient offense has actually been hurting the Clippers on both sides of the court.

"There's a lot of motion and ball movement right now, and that's breaking down our defense -- and I think a little bit carries over to the offensive end, with as hard as we have to exert ourselves defensively to get stops because of their movement and their spacing and all that stuff," Redick said.

Redick, of course, has the added challenge on offense of being guarded by Leonard, the defensive player of the year. Redick said Leonard has taken him out of his flow.

"I think part of the shooting struggles are that I'm not getting easy looks," Redick said. "I can make tough shots, but when the majority of the shots are tough shots, it's a little harder. ... I can't remember too many games recently where I take seven shots in 30 minutes. They've done a really good job of taking away any clean looks."

Redick said that the good news for the Clippers is that Game 3 will have no carryover to Game 4.

"You don't get extra points for blowing a team out," Redick said. "It's one game. We could turn it around. We had a chance to win Game 2. These series can swing. If we can figure something out offensively, we can get some momentum in this series."

Staff writer Ben Bolch contributed to this report.