Here are five takeaways from the Clippers' 105-100 win over the Lakers.
1. Jamal Crawford makes his return
The reigning sixth man of the year played Tuesday after missing five weeks because of a severe right calf sprain that he sustained in a game March 2 against the Minnesota Timberwolves. In his first game back, he made his first shot, a 21-foot fadeaway jumper in the second quarter. Crawford, however, definitely was shaking off some rust, finishing with only four points on two for seven shooting, including missing each of his four three-point attempts in just under 19 minutes of play.
"He played all right," Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said. "He was rusty a little bit. ... He has time to get his rhythm going."
2. The Clippers are in a virtual tie with Memphis for third place in the West
With Tuesday's win the Clippers jumped from fifth to third place in the Western Conference, in a virtual tie with the Memphis Grizzlies. The Clippers are also only one game behind the second-place Houston Rockets. At the same time, the Clippers are only 1/2 a game ahead of the sixth-place San Antonio Spurs. The Clippers only have three games remaining in the regular season as they try to secure homecourt seeding.
"I know that if we keep winning, then something good should happen," Rivers said.
3. The Lakers crowd was louder than the Clippers' crowd at times
The Clippers were playing on their homecourt but, at times, the Lakers fans seemed louder than the Clippers' contingency. Luckily for the Clippers, they have their best road record in franchise history, after winning their 25th away game in Sunday's 106-78 drubbing of the Lakers, which was on the Lakers' homecourt.
"I didn't care one way or another," Rivers said of the Lakers fan being loud. "I was happy the other night, I thought there was a ton of Clippers fans."
4. The Lakers finally made it a competitive game
The Clippers have won a franchise-best seven consecutive games over the Lakers, but at least Tuesday's game was competitive, the Clippers leading by only three points, 103-100, with 11.2 seconds left. In Sunday's 106-78 drubbing of the Lakers, the Clippers led by as many as 43 points while holding the Lakers to the fewest points they've ever scored against the Clippers. And entering Tuesday's game, the Clippers had won their last six games against the Lakers by an average of 26.6 points, including a 142-94 win on March 6 of last year that was the Lakers' worst loss in franchise history.
5. The Clippers get a little break
The Clippers, who don't play again until they host the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday, have two days off before they practice on Friday. After playing Memphis, they host the Denver Nuggets on April 13 before playing at Phoenix on April 14 in their final game of the regular season.
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