Some nicked the front, others clanged off the side and still others caromed high off the back.
It only seemed as though
Jordan's franchise playoff-record-tying 22 rebounds helped the Clippers snatch control of their first-round series against the Warriors with a 98-96 victory in Game 3.
Jordan added 14 points and five blocks, his all-around effort helping the Clippers take a 2-1 lead in the series. He played smothering defense and provided an offensive jolt to complement teammate
Jordan’s rebound total tied
"I feel like it's all our defense," Jordan said when asked to explain his rebounding prowess. "We do a great job initially guarding the ball."
His offense didn't hurt either. As the Clippers amassed an 18-point lead in the third quarter, Jordan had a dunk putback and followed a rare missed jumper by Griffin with a putback layup. He was even passable at the free-throw line, making four of nine attempts.
Jordan's impact extended well beyond the numbers.
He offered encouragement to Griffin, extending his hand for Griffin to slap after Griffin missed a free throw in the third quarter. He later motioned to teammate
For a player who finished third in voting for
"He covers up for us so many times," Paul said. "When guys get by us he's there for us."
Jordan picked up his fourth block when he rejected Harrison Barnes on a driving layup after the Warriors had built considerable momentum in their third-quarter comeback.
His fifth block was even bigger. With the Warriors down by only three points and less than four minutes to play, Jordan met
"Just his presence alone down there was huge," Griffin said. "When he's playing defense like that, he's the anchor of our defense. When you see a guy like that busting himself the whole game, everybody else falls in line."
And the ball tends to bound off the rim and into the right hands for the Clippers over and over.
Jordan’s 13 rebounds in the first half were a franchise record for a half. He also had 10 points by halftime and would have had more had there not been one maddening sequence midway through the first quarter in which he missed a tip-in off an errant
It's the kind of production the Clippers have come to expect from someone who led the league in rebounds (13.6 per game) and field-goal percentage (.676) during the regular season while finishing third in blocked shots (2.5).
Jordan was everywhere his team needed him in its biggest game of the season.