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Wednesday, April 19, 2006 

NO PLACE LIKE HOME FOR CLIPS

The Clips secured home-court advantage in their first-round playoff series with the Denver Nuggets by virtue of Memphis' 101-95 victory at FedEx Forum last night. Round One will open at Staples Center this weekend, after the Clips complete the regular season with tonight's meaningless matchup with the Mavericks in Dallas.

The Clips did anything but tank against the Grizzlies. After trailing by as many as 22, the Clips pulled to within three, 96-93, on a pair of Daniel Ewing free throws with 29 seconds remaining. But a Mike Miller threeball on the next trip down sealed both teams' playoff fates. Still, the Clips beat the eight-point spread -- and actually played their All-Star, while Mike Fratello sat Pau Gasol with a "sore foot" that will miraculously heal by the weekend.

The players on the court wanted and tried to win the game. To that end, James Singleton annihilated his previous career high with a game-high 23 points on 8-11 shooting (including 5-6 3FGs). Walter McCarty continued to impress with 12 on 4-6 FGs. Ewing added nine, Zeljko Rebraca eight, and Vin Baker and Boniface N'Dong six apiece.

Tonight's mission is to get Corey Maggette some playing time, rest whoever wants or needs rest, and get out of Big D without getting hurt. With that accomplished, we can turn our attention to the Nuggets next. Click on Clipper Talk and join the discussion. -- Jordan


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