Everybody Loves Chris

Billups said it at halftime: the Clippers need to keep the game in striking distance, and allow the “little man” [Chris Paul] to take over at the end. That’s exactly what happened in Oklahoma City Wednesday Night. The Clippers trailed by single digits for the majority of the game, but stayed close enough for CP3 to take over. Paul scored 31 points, most notably the game-winning shot on a layup with 8.8 seconds left, leading the Los Angeles Clippers to a 100-98 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder, keeping pressure on the Lakers for home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

Let’s take a look at the final play …

Chris Paul, while dribbling the ball just past half-court, is being guarded by defensive specialist Thabo Sefolosha. Thabo lightly forces Paul towards Perkins (help defender), who is paying very little attention to Blake Griffin.

At the 13.5 sec mark, Kenyon Martin comes up for the screen, yielding Paul to drive the ball to the right. After some nifty footwork to elude Russell Westbrook, Paul tosses in the game-winning basket over he league’s leading shot blocker, Serge Ibaka.

On the following possession, Kevin Durant missed a 3-pointer from the left wing that could have won it, clanking it off the back rim over the outstretched arms of DeAndre Jordan.