The Los Angeles Clippers took advantage of their nationwide TV audience Sunday night to introduce their new edition to NBA fans across the nation; and they showed off big time in the second half as they walloped the Golden State Warriors at the Oracle Center to start off the campaign with a 105-86 win. The Clippers have sparked interest from coast-to-coast over the past couple of weeks and their stars came through with quite a performance. Rookie Of The Year Blake Griffin knocked down a game high 22 points while the Clippers back-court put on a show; with Chauncey Billups scoring 21 points while Chris Paul added 21 in the victory. David Lee led the way for the Warriors as the big man recorded a double-double with 21 points while Monta Ellis had 15 points for the night.
Los Angeles certainly did not look dominating in the first half; however they would hold the advantage at the end of the first as Paul knocked down a pair from the line with 28 seconds remaining putting his club on top at the end of the period 24-20. The game would remain close in the second quarter with the Warriors heading into the locker room as the game reached the half with slim 43-41 lead.
The visitors would get down to business in the third as they would go ahead by as many as ten points; but settled for being on top by seven with the score 75-68 at the end of the quarter. Golden State would get to within one point at about midway through the fourth; however they could never get any closer and soon fell by the wayside as the Clippers ran away with the game.
Griffin scored 22 points, 7 rebounds, 2 steals and 1 assist while Billups knocked down 21 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists. Paul contributed 20 points, 9 assists, 2 rebounds nd 2 steals while Caron Butler had a double-double with 11 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals.
Lee racked up a double-double with 21 points, 12 boards, 2 assists and a block while Ellis had 15 points, 8 assists, 4 rebounds and a steal. Brandon Rush came off the bench and chipped in 12 points, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks and a steal while Andris Biedrins added 10 points, 8 rebounds and 3 blocks. The Clippers are off until Wednesday as they travel to San Antonio and face the Spurs while the Warriors host the Bulls on Monday night.