The San Antonio Spurs inconstant play on the offensive end of the court was their undoing as they fell 98-87 to the Los Angeles Clippers in their regular season home finale at the AT&T Center on Saturday night.
Kawhi Leonard finished with a game-high 28 points and LaMarcus Aldridge added 18. Pau Gasol chipped in 15 points off the bench for San Antonio, who lost their tenth home game of the season after going 40-1 inside the friendly confines a year ago.
San Antonio struggled offensively in the second quarter, going down by as many as 14 points. Leonard and Aldridge would rally the Spurs back, bringing them within four points in the third quarter. The coronation of Chris Paul and Blake Griffin were too much for the home town Spurs.
It is the inconstant play that has Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich using the final two games as a ‘warm up’ for next weekend’s NBA Playoffs.
“Nobody’s going to rest,” he said of the final two games next week. “Everybody’s going to play…It’s time for rhythm and that sort of thing.”
The Clippers were led by Chris Paul’s 19 points. DeAndre Jordan added 17 points and 17 rebounds and despite struggling from the field, Griffin had 18 for Los Angeles (49-31), who are in a battle with the Utah Jazz for home court advantage in Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs.
Player of the game:
Chris Paul is Project Spurs’ Player of the Game. His 19 points was key in LA’s win, but the way he sliced and diced through the San Antonio defense had the Silver and Black on its heels all night long.
Up next: The Spurs are now 61-19 on the season and will return to the court on Monday night when they travel to Portland to face the Trail Blazers at 9:30 p.m. inside the Moda Center.