The five-time NBA champions made their presence known in their first home game this postseason.
The San Antonio Spurs led by as many as 37 points and never trailed in their 100-73 victory over the Clippers during Game 3 in San Antonio on Friday night. The Spurs now lead the best-of-seven series, two games to one. Game 4 will be in San Antonio at 12:30 p.m. PDT Sunday.
The Spurs outscored the Clippers, 22-11, in the third quarter to take a 21-point lead into the fourth. The Clippers' point totals in the third quarter and in the game were the fewest points they've scored this season.
The Spurs opened the fourth quarter with an 8-2 run and went on to lead by 37 points after Marco Belinelli made back-to-back three pointers with 5 minutes 29 seconds left.
Kawhi Leonard, the NBA's defensive player of the year, scored more than twice as much as any other player, finishing with a career-high 32 points on 13-for-18 shooting, four rebounds, three steals and two blocked shots. Boris Diaw added 15 points and six rebounds.
The Spurs outshot the Clippers from the field, 52.6% to 34.1%, and from beyond the three-point line, 41.7% to 26.1%. The Spurs also outrebounded the Clippers, 47-38, and had 25 assists while the Clippers had only 14.
Blake Griffin led the Clippers with 14 points, but it took him 15 shots to get them. Griffin also had 10 rebounds and five assists.
Chris Paul had an off game, finishing with more turnovers (six) than assists (four). Paul also had only seven points on three-for-11 shooting.
Jamal Crawford, the Clippers' leading scorer off the bench, made only one of his 11 field-goal attempts.
The one positive to come out of Friday's game for the Clippers is that the starters at least got some rest after being pulled out of the game early in the fourth quarter.
Marco Belinelli made back-to-back three-pointers to give the Spurs a 37-point lead, 92-55, over the Clippers with 5 minutes 29 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
Clippers Coach Doc Rivers has taken the starters out of the game.
The Spurs opened the fourth quarter with an 8-2 run to increase their lead to 27 points, 78-51, with 9 minutes 13 seconds left, prompting Clippers Coach Doc Rivers to call a timeout.
Three Spurs players have scored in double figures, while only Blake Griffin (14 points) has scored in double figures for the Clippers.
Spurs 70, Clippers 49 (end of third quarter)
The Spurs outscored the Clippers in the third quarter, 22-11, to take a 21-point lead into the fourth quarter.
The Clippers' 11 points was their fewest points in a quarter this season.
Kawhi Leonard had 13 points in the third quarter and has 29 points in the game, more than twice what any other player has scored. He's made 12 of his 17 shots.
Blake Griffin leads the Clippers with 12 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.
How off are the Clippers? Chris Paul has more turnovers (five) than assists (three), and Jamal Crawford, who is the Clippers' leading scorer off of the bench, has missed each of his nine shots from the field.
Chris Paul committed his fifth turnover halfway through the third quarter, doubling the amount of turnovers that he averages per game during the regular season (2.3). He has more turnovers than assists (two).
The Spurs have built a 16-point lead, 59-43, with six minutes left in the quarter.
The Spurs took their largest lead of the game at 16 points, 56-40, after Kawhi Leonard made back-to-back shots with 8 minutes 13 seconds left in the third quarter.
Leonoard has scored more than twice as much as anyone else in Game 3 with 24 points on 10-for-14 shooting.
Spurs 46, Clippers 38 (halftime)
The Spurs have an eight-point lead over the Clippers at halftime in Game 3 of the teams' first-round playoff series.
The Clippers used a 7-0 run to cut the Spurs' 12-point lead to four, 35-31, with just less than four minutes left in the second quarter. The Spurs then went on an 11-2 run to take a 13-point lead with 1 minute 35 seconds left.
That Spurs run included a monster right-handed dunk from Kawhi Leonard off an alley-oop pass from Danny Green that made the Spurs' crowd roar.
Leonard leads the Spurs with 16 points on six-for-10 shooting. Danny Green and Boris Diaw each have eight points.
Blake Griffin leads the Clippers with 10 points on five-for-11 shooting, six rebounds and four assists. J.J. Redick has seven points.
The Spurs are outshooting the Clippers from the field, 43.9% to 34.1%, and from beyond the three-point line, 40% to 25%.
Jamal Crawford has struggled from the field, missing each of his five shots. And Chris Paul has a very uncharacteristic four turnovers to go along with five points and only two assists.
Chris Paul has three turnovers with six minutes left in the second quarter, already more than the 2.3 turnovers a game that he averaged during the regular season.
Meanwhile, Jamal Crawford had missed all five of his shots from the field.
The Spurs are ahead by eight points, 35-27.
The Spurs opened the second quarter with back-to-back three-pointers to take a 12-point lead, 31-19, with 10 minutes 33 seconds left until halftime.
The Clippers called a timeout immediately following the second three-pointer, which was made by Patty Mills.
The Spurs have opened Game 3 shooting lights out, making 11 of their 21 shots (52.4%).
The Clippers, on the other, missed their first five shots of the game and are shooting six for 18 (33.3%) from the field.
J.J. Redick leads the Clippers with seven points on two-for-three shooting. DeAndre Jordan is the only other Clipper who has scored more than two points -- he has four points and three rebounds.
Kawhi Leonard leads the Spurs with 10 points on four-for-five shooting from the field, making two of his three three-point shots. Tony Parker, who had tightness in his right Achilles' tendon in Game 2, has four points on two-for-five shooting.
The Clippers have only made one of their eight three-point attempts. The Spurs are three for eight from beyond the arc.
The Clippers also have four turnovers, while the Spurs only have one.
The Clippers, who missed their first five shots of the game, have made their last five shots to cut their deficit to five points, 18-13, with 4 minutes and 15 seconds left.
J.J. Redick leads the Clippers with seven points on two-for-three shooting. No other Clipper has more than two points.
The Spurs are ahead by seven points, 13-6, with 6 minutes 10 seconds left in the quarter.
Games 3 and 4 are in San Antonio tonight and Sunday afternoon, respectively. The Clippers have won a franchise-best 26 road games this season, including a 20-point victory in San Antonio.
In Game 2, the Clippers overcame a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to take a two-point lead, 94-92, with less than a minute left. Then with 11.9 seconds left, Blake Griffin committed a costly turnover, and Patty Mills was fouled on a breakaway lauyp and made two free throws for the Spurs, who sent the game into overtime.
In overtime, the Spurs led by as many as six points before Chris Paul made a three-pointer with less than a minute left to cut the Clippers' deficit to three. But the Clippers could not complete the comeback.