The Clippers sealed their fifth consecutive win with a victory over the Pelicans in New Orleans on Thursday night.
Here are five takeaways from the 95-89 victory:
1. If Chris Paul proved anything Thursday night against New Orleans, it was that he will stay the course no matter how poorly he is shooting the basketball.
Paul’s shots betrayed him the entire game, with his misses continually mounting. But with the Clippers clinging to a one-point lead with one minute left in a tense game, Paul confidently drilled a 19-foot jumper for a three-point lead the Clippers would not relinquish.
Paul had missed his first seven shots, making his eighth attempt on a put-back of his own missed layup.
There’s something about New Orleans that seems to bring out the worst shooting in Paul. On March 26, 2014, Paul missed all 12 of his shots, the most misses in his career during a 98-96 loss to his former New Orleans team.
2. Wesley Johnson continues to play solid basketball for the Clippers. Johnson had seven points, three rebounds and two assists.
He played good defense, defending small forwards and power forwards in the process.
3. In every game, it seems, DeAndre Jordan collects double-figure rebounds.
He had 20 boards against the Pelicans, eight on the offensive end.
Jordan gave the Clippers extra offensive possessions with his hustle and determination.
He also had 11 points, mostly on dunks (of course).
Smith had started at power forward against Utah when Blake Griffin went out with a partially torn left quad tendon, but Smith hasn’t seen the court since.
It’s clear Smith is not a part of Clippers Coach Doc Rivers’ plans.
That has led to speculation by some NBA scouts and front-office people that Smith’s future with the Clippers may not be long.
The Clippers signed Smith to a one-year, $1.5-million contract last summer, hoping that the forward would give them a quality back up behind Griffin and Jordan at center. But that has not been the case.
5. The Clippers continue to use the three-point shot as a threat.
They took 34 against the Pelicans, making 10 for 29.4% shooting.
J.J. Redick was four for seven from three-point range, but Johnson was one for seven and Jamal Crawford one for five.
Follow Broderick Turner on Twitter @BA_Turner
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