Blake Griffin hit a pair at the charity stripe with 4:31 remaining in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s contest between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Memphis Grizzlies at the Staples Center; giving the Clippers an 84-74 lead. It appeared that the home team was just minutes away from a rather easy victory and would be heading back to Memphis with the club leading the match-up by a 3-1 edge. The Grizzlies however, had other ideas and would knot up the score with 35 seconds left in the quarter as Rudy Gay hit a bucket, making it an 85-85 affair. The two teams would head to the extra-period with the score knotted at 87-87; but Chris Paul would step it up in overtime, scoring 8 of his 27 game points after regulation ended and the Clippers won the contest 101-97.
Griffin knocked down 30 points before he fouled out in overtime and along with CP-3, have the Clippers on the verge of something they have rarely accomplished during the history of the franchise; win a Post Season series. Mike Conley would lead the way for Memphis as he put up 25 points while Rudy Gay finished the game with 23 points.
Los Angeles held the advantage for most of the night, however every time that the Clippers seemed to be ready to break open the game; they could see the Grizzlies waving to them in their rear-view mirror. Paul would give the Clippers the upper-hand at the conclusion of the first as he hit a pair at the free throw line with four seconds to play, making it a 32-26 game.
Conley would drive the lane putting the ball in the cylinder with 8:44 remaining in the second to cut their opponent’s lead to 36-34; however Griffin would split a pair with 3:13 to play putting the Clippers on top 50-40. Memphis would finish the quarter on a 5-1 run and as the game reached the half Los Angeles would be ahead by a score of 51-45.
Rudy Gay hit a pair at the line with 9:22 remaining in the third cutting the Clippers lead to 53-51, however Los Angeles then scored five unanswered points. Kenyon Martin hit a shot nine feet from the hoop with 27 seconds left and the Clippers would end the third on top 69-64.
Memphis would gain the upper-hand with 9:30 to play on the fourth as Hamed Haddadi split a pair at the line making it a 70-69 contest. The advantage would soon disappear as the Clippers would go on a 15-4 run putting them back on top by ten points when Griffin made his two shots at the line. The momentum would quickly head back into the Grizzlies direction and they would send the game to overtime.
Although Griffin would foul out of the contest with 2:26 left in the extra-period, his team was on top 95-89 and by that point CP-3 was doing all the heavy lifting. The two teams will meet again on Wednesday for the fifth game of the match-up, with Memphis hoping the home-court advantage will allow them to extend the series and their season.