Blake Griffin was on the bench having fouled out after playing just 19 minutes. Chris Paul thought he was fouled as the ball trickled off his hands and out of bounds. Meanwhile, the Warriors were going to the line and missing their free throws before Darren Collison stepped out of bounds trying to corral a rebound.
The Clippers had their chances and missed them time and time again. An early fast start dissipated behind the Warriors’ brilliant passing and shot making. And Los Angeles’ late rally that tied the game up and gave the team a chance to steal Game One despite all of that fell short. Draymond Green made critical free throws down the stretch as the Warriors held on for the 109-105 win at Staples Center.
This game left Los Angeles crying foul.
Griffin was so key all game and his absence was certainly felt. Griffin scored 16 points on 6-for-13 shooting and grabbed three rebounds in his shortened playing time. He was +9 for the game. That was a big deal for the Clippers.
Chris Paul was brilliant too for much of the game with 28 points, seven rebounds and eight assists. His late-game gaffes will stand out though. J.J. Redick had 22 points in 30 minutes.
The Warriors though deserve their credit for fighting their way back and taking control of the game. Golden State had 26 assists on 40 field goal makes and hit on 11 of 27 3-pointers. The Warriors were most effective when they moved the ball around the perimeter and in the interior. The offense stagnated when they went to one-on-one play and that is how the Clippers made it back.
Klay Thompson scored 22 and David Lee had 20 points for lead the Warriors.
Game Two is going to be a blood bath when it takes place Monday night.