Crawford sizzles as Clippers hammer Mavs
LOS ANGELES - Jamal Crawford once again sizzled off the bench as the Los Angeles Clippers pounded the struggling Dallas Mavericks 112-90 with a commanding display on their home court on Wednesday.
Crawford scored a game-high 20 points on seven-of 12 shooting while twice All-Star forward Blake Griffin weighed in with 19 points and 13 rebounds to help Los Angeles win their fourth successive game.
With forward Caron Butler contributing 16 points and guard Chris Paul adding 14 along with 13 assists, six Clippers players reached double figures as the home team improved their record to 12-6.
Veteran guard Vince Carter led the way with 16 points for the Mavericks, whose 11-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki has not yet played this season while he recovers from knee surgery.
Dallas were outshot by 50 percent to 40.5 from the field and out-rebounded 49-41 at the Staples Center as they slipped to 8-10 for the season.
The Clippers made a fast start in front of a sellout crowd of 19,060, racing 7-0 up before ending the first quarter with a commanding 29-18 lead after being paced by dunk specialist Griffin, who scored 11 points.
Though the Mavericks began the second quarter with an unanswered 9-0 run to cut the deficit to 29-27, the red-hot Crawford made three three-pointers as the Clippers again pulled away to go up 60-42 by half-time.
Dallas closed the gap to 69-57 after former Los Angeles Lakers guard Derek Fisher made three three-pointers but Los Angeles regained control to take an 83-68 advantage into the final quarter.
There was no way back from there for the Mavericks and the Clippers completed their scoring with a flourish when back-up point guard Eric Bledsoe drove to the basket for a layup before adding an alley oop dunk after an assist from Crawford. (Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)