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Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012
Griffin, Clippers dunk Thunder
LOS ANGELES — Blake Griffin's jaw-dropping one-handed jam over Kendrick Perkins sent Los Angeles Clippers fans into a frenzy, fired up his teammates, lit up the Twitterverse and burned the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Griffin had 22 points to go with Chris Paul's 26 points and 14 assists in a 112-100 victory Monday night that snapped the Thunder's four-game winning streak in a matchup of division leaders.
Griffin downplayed his monster move after the game, a sly smile only briefly breaking his serious expression.
"CP commands so much attention out there. He came off the pick-and-roll and he hit me in stride," Griffin said.
Paul added: "I told Blake after the game, 'Thanks for letting me be part of that.' "
DeAndre Jordan grabbed Griffin from behind in a celebratory bear hug as the basket got replayed over and over in the third quarter.
Jordan, who had 11 points and 11 rebounds, couldn't help himself.
"I was shocked. I didn't know what to do, so I just grabbed him. I hit him kind of hard," he said. "I'm going to go home and watch it again. It's probably going to be the screensaver on my phone."
Griffin said he knew he'd made an impression judging by the crowd's raucous response. Then he felt Jordan behind him.
"He armlocked me," Griffin said. "I couldn't breathe."
Caron Butler had 22 points, Chauncey Billups scored 13 and Mo Williams 12 as the Pacific-leading Clippers dunked with high-flying abandon against the team with the NBA's best record at 16-4. They won their third in a row to follow up a 109-105 victory at Denver a night earlier that began a stretch of five games in seven nights.
"We're not going to read too much into it," Paul said of the back-to-back wins. "It let us know what we're capable of. We can explode offensively."
Kevin Durant had 36 points and 13 rebounds, and Russell Westbrook added 31 for the Northwest-leading Thunder, whose league-best road record dropped to 8-3. They had won 11 of their previous 12.
Heat 109, Hornets 95
In Miami, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade each scored 22 points, Mike Miller added 14 off the bench and the Heat shook off a slow start to run away from New Orleans.
James added 11 rebounds and eight assists for Miami, which won for the eighth time in nine games and ended up with six players in double figures.
Bulls 98, Wizards 88
In Washington, Derrick Rose scored a season-high 35 points, Carlos Boozer had 18 and Kyle Korver added 17 to lead Chicago over the Wizards.
76ers 74, Magic 69
In Philadelphia, Andre Iguodala had 14 points and 11 rebounds to lead the surprising Sixers past Orlando for their third straight win.
Timberwolves 120, Rockets 108
In Houston Michael Beasley scored 34 points, Ricky Rubio had 18 points and 11 assists and Minnesota beat the Rockets in coach Rick Adelman's return to Houston.
Kevin Love had 29 points for the Timberwolves, who broke open a close game with 42 points in the third for their highest-scoring quarter this season.
Spurs 83, Grizzlies 73
In Memphis, Matt Bonner scored 15 points, going 5 of 9 from outside the arc, and Tim Duncan added 14 as San Antonio sent the Grizzlies to their fourth straight loss.
Rookie forward Kawhi Leonard had 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Spurs, who snapped a two-game skid. Richard Jefferson scored 13 points, while Danny Green finished with 11.
Bucks 103, Pistons 82
In Milwaukee, Brandon Jennings had 21 points, reserve Mike Dunleavy added a season-high 20 on 8-for-10 shooting and the Bucks rolled to an easy victory over skidding Detroit.
Drew Gooden shot 7 of 9 and scored 16 points for the Bucks, including seven straight in the third quarter during a decisive 12-2 run to open the second half.
Jazz 93, Trail Blazers 89
In Salt Lake City, Paul Millsap had 19 points and 15 rebounds, and Utah used a 13-0 fourth-quarter surge to beat Portland.
LaMarcus Aldridge led the Blazers with 25 points, including 14 in the third quarter as Portland built an 11-point lead.
Mavericks 122, Suns 99
In Phoenix, Vince Carter scored 21 points against a Suns team that's still paying him and Dallas took advantage of Steve Nash's absence to rout the Suns.
Nash, the NBA assists leader, was out with a bruised left thigh.
Delonte West scored a season-high 25 on 9-of-12 shooting, including 5 of 6 3-pointers, in the Mavs' eighth straight win over Phoenix.