The Clippers won Game 1 on Monday, 117-101, even though they were playing without eight-time All-Star
"What he's doing right now is historically unprecedented and I expect him to continue to play at this level,"
In Game 1, the Clippers trailed by as much as 13 points in the second quarter, but slowly chipped away at their deficit, cutting it to just four points at halftime. Then in the fourth quarter, the Clippers went on a 12-0 run to pull away from the Rockets.
"There wasn't a sense of panic or anything like that with our team," Redick said. "We just kept plugging away, plugging away."
The Clippers outshot the Rockets from beyond the three-point line, 41.9% to 33.3%, and from the free-throw line, 73.3% to 58.3%. The teams combined for 47 turnovers in that game -- the Rockets had 24; the Clippers had 23.
Entering Monday's game, the Rockets had six days of rest after beating the
“Our energy has to be better and it starts with mental energy,” Rockets' center
Howard led the Rockets with 22 points on nine-for-13 shooting, 10 rebounds and five blocked shots. Rockets' Shooting guard
Clippers' reserve guard Austin Rivers will likely start in Paul's place if Paul is out for Game 2, as expected. Rivers started in Paul's place for Game 1, finishing with 17 points and four steals, but he also had three turnovers.
The elder Rivers said he was proud of how the Clippers gutted out the win in Game 1 without Paul, though he added that he doesn't want it to give his team a false sense of confidence against the Rockets.