Clippers guaranteed at least a No. 3 seed after beating Suns, 112-101

Clippers secure at least No. 3 seed for Western Conference playoffs with victory over Suns, 112-101

The Clippers won their seventh game in a row, and their 14th of their last 15 games after beating the Suns in Phoenix, 112-101, in their final game of the regular season.

More importantly, the win guaranteed the Clippers (56-26) at least a No. 3 seed in the Western Conference. They're currently in second place, half a game ahead of the Houston Rockets and the San Antonio Spurs, who both play Wednesday. The Clippers will keep the second seed only if both the Rockets and the Spurs lose.

The Clippers will start the playoffs Saturday or Sunday, owning home-court advantage in the first round.

The Clippers led by as much as 30 points before the Suns cut the margin to 11 points with two minutes left, prompting Clippers Coach Doc Rivers to put the starters back in the game. But it was too little too late for the Suns (39-43), who finished in 10th place in the West, out of playoff contention.

Each of the Clippers starters except for Matt Barnes finished in double figures. Chris Paul had 22 points on eight-for-17 shooting, including a season-high six three-pointers in 11 attempts in 29 minutes. He also had six assists.

Paul also had a first  -- he played in all 82 games for the first time in his 10 seasons in the league.

Blake Griffin had 20 points on eight-for-14 shooting, eight rebounds and five assists in 30 minutes. DeAndre Jordan had 13 points, 14 rebounds and two blocked shots. Jordan finished the season with 1,226 rebounds, the all-time franchise season record. 

Spencer Hawes had 13 points on five-for-seven shooting, his first time scoring in double figures since March 1.


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