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Thursday, April 13, 2006 

HOW SWEEP IT IS FOR CLIPS

Finally, a team the Clippers can beat. The Trail Blazers took the positives, but the Clips took the W last night at Staples Center, 97-93, completing the first season sweep of Portland in their history in too-close-for-comfort fashion. With the victory, the team equals a Clipper record for most wins with 45.

Brad Gilbert would be proud, because the Clips won this one ugly. They allowed 45.6% shooting by a balanced Blazer attack that saw eight men score seven or more points. Portland competed evenly with the playoff-bound Clips in most categories in a game that featured four ties and 15 lead changes.

Elton Brand led the way for L.A. with 25 points on 12-16 shooting, evoking memories of the E.B. who was a first-half contender for league MVP. Sam Cassell posted a 19-point, 10-assist double-double on poor shooting, while Chris Kaman contributed 14 and 11 but continued to put the ball on the floor unnecessarily. Cuttino Mobley, overdue for a good game, made 3-4 FGs and 7-8 FTs for 13.

Afterward, Nate McMillan said, "I do respect the way this team played tonight. These young guys came out and fought and played together. All the things we've been talking about all season long. We got that tonight." Mike Dunleavy, meanwhile, bemoaned his veterans' inconsistency and lack of toughness. A win's a win, but we'd all like to see more energy and better execution, greater urgency and a sense of purpose with the playoffs nigh at hand and Corey Maggette out indefinitely with a herniated disc.

Still, the Clips sit in the catbird seat at sixth, .5 games behind Memphis and 1.5 games ahead of Denver for home court. With the Nuggets' loss last night in Utah, they'll need two more wins in their last three (vs. SAC, vs. HOU, @ SEA) than the Clips cull in their final four (@ SEA, vs. SEA, @ MEM, @ DAL). A sweep of Seattle would secure home court if the Clips stay at 6, but Chris Wilcox's Sonics -- with recent wins over San Antonio, Phoenix and Memphis -- aren't the same team the Clips last faced three months ago to the day.

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

Just Some Facts About

Albert Einstein was born on March 14, 1879, around 11:30 AM LMT, in the city of Ulm in W�rttemberg, Germany, about 100 km east of Stuttgart. His father was Hermann Einstein, a salesman who later ran an electrochemical works, and his mother was Pauline, n�e Koch. They were married in Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt. Albert's family members were all non-observant Jews and he attended a Catholic elementary school. At the insistence of his mother, he was given violin lessons. Though he initially disliked the lessons, and eventually discontinued them, he would later take great solace in Mozart's violin sonatas.

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