By Broderick Turner
11:10 PM PST, December 12, 2013
NEW YORK — NEW YORK — All of the Clippers looked drained Thursday night, as if they had nothing left from the emotional night for their coach Wednesday and from Day 11 of a 13-day trip.
The Clippers just didn't seem to have the energy to give it their all during a 102-93 loss to the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center.
It was more than just playing a back-to-back game for the Clippers.
The game in Boston was a celebration of Doc Rivers' coming back for the first time after spending nine years there as coach and winning a championship in 2008. It was an emotional game for Rivers, one that left him teary-eyed and one which his players wanted to win for him.
"Yesterday's game was a hard game for us," Rivers said. "I told our coaches before the game that I was concerned about the game after my pregame talk. I was looking at the guys and it was pretty dead."
The Clippers started strong, opening a 13-point lead in the first quarter.
By the time the game was over, however, they had trailed by 23 points and shot 37.1% from the field. The 20 points from Chris Paul and the 12 points and 11 rebounds from Blake Griffin weren't nearly enough.
The Clippers also couldn't make their free throws, going 35 for 52 (67.3%) from the line.
They are 3-3 on a trip that finishes in Washington against the Wizards on Saturday night.
"No question we're ready for this trip to be over, but we're in the NBA," Paul said. "We know what we signed up for. So you got to play each game and take it one game at a time.
"But 3-3 isn't what we were expecting on this trip. But 3-4 is definitely unacceptable."
When the game was over, Rivers met with Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett at half court to share a hug.
Rivers, Pierce and Garnett won an NBA championship together in Boston and had developed a bond while with the Celtics.
Now all three are with different teams, Rivers with the Clippers and Pierce and Garnett with the Nets.
"They were really happy about last night," said Rivers, referring to the video and celebration for the coach in Boston.
The Clippers lost the game for good in the third, being outscored, 27-18.
They couldn't make a shot in the third, shooting 16.7% (three for 18). They couldn't get any defensive stops, allowing the Nets to make 57.9% of their shots in the quarter.
Andray Blatche and Joe Johnson scored 21 points for the Nets.
"We had great energy to start the game," Griffin said. "Then as the game went on, they picked it up and we didn't respond. That can't happen, especially when you start the game with more energy. You've got to keep feeding off it no matter what happens."
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