Clippers miss big opportunity, Spurs take advantage

Clippers miss big opportunity, Spurs take advantage
Clippers All-Star point guard Chris Paul discusses the 111-107 Game 2 loss to the San Antonio Spurs.

This time, it was the Clippers lamenting about what could have been in Game 2 of the Western Conference first-round playoff series Monday night against the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center.

For the Clippers, it was poor execution when the outcome hung in the balance that cost them the game and the home-court advantage in the best-of-seven series, now tied at 1-1.


The Clippers had come all the way back from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter and had an opportunity to win the game.

Chris Paul, who had been on his game all night, got the switch he wanted when Tim Duncan came over to defend the Clippers guard.

Paul had Duncan on his heels but missed a 19-foot jumper, sending the game into overtime, where the Clippers ended up losing, 111-107.

And in overtime, Blake Griffin, who had his first playoff triple-double with 29 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, had a costly miscue that ruined any chance the Clippers had of getting closer.

Griffin lost control of the basketball with 1:11 left in OT, throwing it away with the Clippers trailing 105-101.

"We've got to finish," Paul said. "We've been talking about it all season long. We had an opportunity to win a game, go up 2-0 and didn't take full advantage of it. We didn't execute down the stretch."

Now with games 3 (Friday night) and 4 (Sunday) back in San Antonio, the Spurs hope to have a healthy Tony Parker.

The Spurs said Parker, who suffered a twisted left ankle and bruised left thigh in Game 1, left Game 2 with tightness in his right Achilles' tendon.

That didn't stop the Spurs from getting it done when it counted the most.

They inserted Patty Mills for Parker and just ran their stuff. The Spurs were six-for-nine from the field in the overtime, four-for-four from the free-throw line.

Mills had eight of his 18 points in the OT.