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Saturday, March 11, 2006 

CLIPS ARE AVENGING ANGELS

Not much time to savor the Clips' sweet 107-96 victory at Chicago last night. I didn't see the game (went to a Golden Girls reunion at the Directors Guild -- what could be gayer than that?), but have a few quick thoughts:

-- Outfitted with the same finger brace as Cuttino Mobley, Sam Cassell (still more E.T. than Freddy Krueger) nevertheless hit 61.1% FGs and 100% FTs to lead all scorers by a huge margin with 32.
-- You can't stop Elton Brand, you can only hope to contain him, but the Bulls defended him as well as any opponent this season. EB had only nineteen points but rebounded from two poor showings on the glass with thirteen boards and his 33rd double-double of the campaign.
-- The stats read nearly identically for both teams. The biggest difference: the Clips got to the charity stripe 37 times, converting 33, while the Bulls (who scored four more field goals) hit thirteen of just sixteen attempts.
-- Two other terrific numbers for the Clips: only 8 turnovers (they average 14.4) and 38 big points off the bench to match the Bulls' reserves. Coach Dunleavy told his troops before tip-off that he's going with Brand, Cassell, Mobley, Chris Kaman, Quinton Ross, Vladimir Radmanovic, Shaun Livingston and Corey Maggette the rest of the way. Vlad Rad, Livy and Maggs all responded with double-figure scoring (Vladi: 4-9 3FGs, Twig: 5 dimes, Corey: 10-11 FTs).
-- Before the season, Dunleavy said the team would need to win two-thirds of its home games and go .500 on the road to secure a playoff spot. By avenging the Bulls' 97-91 victory Feb. 12 in L.A. (the one loss I haven't been able to get over until now), the Clips raise their road record to 14-15 and, with a home mark of 21-10, can keep that pace with a win tonight at Milwaukee.
-- The '75-'76 Buffalo Braves also went 35-25 through 60 games and finished 46-36 en route to the franchise's only playoff series win.

Click on Clipper Talk and join the discussion. -- Jordan


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