Los Angeles Clippers Stat Monkey Brief: Clippers/Rockets (1/15/13)
I am writing this article while on vacation, and the internet is too slow at the hotel to search YouTube for highlights. So instead, here is one of my favorite movie scenes.
Missing their best player didnâ€™t slow down the Clippers as they rolled to a 26 point win against the Grizzlies, a team that sits seventh in our power rankings. Eric Bledsoe did a great job filling for Chris Paul by tallying 14 points four assists and two steals. The real story was, again, the Clippersâ€™ bench who abused the Grizzliesâ€™ bench by outscoring them 54 to 26.
Speaking of the Clippersâ€™ bench, I was not aware that Grant Hill was still alive or that he was on the Clippers. Yet he is. Hill logged eight points in 17 minutes along with four boards, four assists, and a block, which is a pretty solid game for a 40 year old player playing just his second game of the season.
Tonight, the Clippers continue their road trip by traveling to Houston to take on the 21-17 Rockets, who will be looking to snap their three game losing streak. The main factor that the Clippers will need to focus on tonight is slowing down the Rocketsâ€™ offense that is averaging a league leading 105.4 points per game. The biggest focus has to be placed on James Harden, who is fourth in the league in scoring with 26.5 points per game. If you look at Hardenâ€™s splits between Houstonâ€™s wins and losses, you can see that he is averaging almost five less points and shooting 10 percent worse from the field in losses.
Disrupting Hardenâ€™s game might be easier said than done, however. The Clippers defense performs at their worst when they do not get rest and on average give up 100.4 points in the second game of back-to-backs, almost seven points worse than their season average. So the key match-up to watch will be how effective will Bledsoe, Willie Green, and Matt Barnes be at defending Harden.
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