Tony Parker scored 23 points and Tim Duncan added 19 as the San Antonio Spurs battled from 24 points down to take a commanding 3-0 series lead with a 96-86 game 3 Western Conference Semifinals win at the Staples Center. Parker shot just 8/20 (40%) but dashed to the cup with several dazzling display drives while handing out a team high 10 assists. Duncan made 8/16 (50%) overall grabbing a team high 13 rebounds and recording 4 assists. Kahwi Leonard contributed 14 points and 9 rebounds for San Antonio, who shot 46% overall and 9/22 (41%) from beyond the arc. Despite converting just 17/25 (68%) from the charity stripe and committing 14 turnovers, they recorded 27 assists and 8 blocked shots, 4 by Duncan. Blake Griffin led the Clippers with 28 points, 20 in the first half on 13/24 (54%) from the field along with 16 rebounds. Mo Williams added 19 off the bench on 8/12 (67%) overall and Chris Paul contributed 12 along with a team high 11 assists despite just 5/17 (29%) from the field. LA like SA shot 46% overall but attempted just 18 free throws converting just 9 (50%). The Clippers outrebounded the Spurs 44-41 and recorded 11 steals but blew a 40-16 early first half lead. The Clippers opened the game with a rush, outscoring the Spurs 33-11 while shooting 64 percent. Los Angeles ended the first quarter on a 20-2 run, including 14 in a row. Griffin scored 12 points in the spurt, hitting eight straight while the Spurs committed six turnovers and made just five of 20 field goals. The Spurs closed the half on a 15-5 spurt, with Parker and Ginobili scoring five each, to trail 53-43 at the break. Griffin missed just three of his 13 shots in the first half, when the Clippers controlled the boards and the paint. San Antonio outscored LA 26-8 in the decisive third quarter taking a 69-61 lead as the once raucious sellout crowd suddenly grew silent. The Spurs took their first lead during the 24-0 run on a fadeaway jumper by Duncan, who scored nine points in the outburst that put them ahead for good. Danny Green added seven and Leonard five. San Antonio led by 11 points early in the fourth before the Clippers got within seven on consecutive baskets by Williams. Gary Neal hit a 3-pointer to launch a 13-9 spurt, capped by Parker's 3-pointer, that extended the Spurs' lead to 89-78. Paul, so dominant in the final period during the regular season, was limited to four points. Game 4 is Sunday night back at the Staples Center at 10:30 pm EST where the Spurs look to complete the sweep for a return trip to the NBA Western Conference Finals.
Russell Westrbook scored 37 points and Kevin Durant added 31 as the Oklahoma City Thunder took a commanding 3-1 Western Conference Semifinals series lead with a 103-100 win over the LA Lakers. Westrbook caught fire in the second half making 15/26 (58%) from the field and drained 6/7 free throws (86%) from the free throw line. Durant shot 10/18 (56%) overall including 3/4 (75%) from 3 point range sinking 8/10 (80%) from the charity stripe and collecting a team high 13 rebounds. Serge Ibaka contributed 14 points on 7/11 (64%) shooting. The Thunder shot 49% from the floor including 6/16 (38%) from 3 point range.They converted 21/25 (84%) from the charity stripe and committed jut 6 team turnovers. Kobe Bryant led all 5 Lakers in double figures with 38 points on 12/28 (43%) from the field and 14/17 (82%) from the charity stripe. Bryant also pulled down 8 rebounds and handed out 5 assists. Andrew Bynum added 18 on 9/15 (60%) from the floor along with 9 rebounds. Metta World Peace contributed 14 for the Lake show who shot just 43% overall including a dismal 5/18 (28%) from the 3 point line. LA also shot 21/29 (72%) from the free throw line and outrebounded OKC 43-39 committing just 7 turnovers. The Lakers pretty much held a double digit lead for the majority of the game and led 92-81 with 7:45 to play before Westbrook went to work with a furious series of drives to the hoop. The UCLA product scored nine points in just over two minutes, and Kendrick Perkins capped the 17-4 run on a putback layup with 1:16 left, putting Oklahoma City up 98-96 with its first lead since the first quarter. After Bryant evened it with two free throws, Westbrook and Pau Gasol then traded turnovers, with Durant swiping Gasol's careless pass before burying a straightaway 3-pointer that silenced Staples Center. The Thunder made 10 of their 15 shots (67%) in the final period. With a surge that seemed inevitable to the Lakers' worried crowd, Durant and Westbrook led the Thunder back with teamwork throughout a 32-point fourth quarter. Bryant was left lamenting the help he didn't get -- particularly from four-time All-Star Pau Gasol, who made a late costly unforced turnover with an errant pass while seemingly having an 8 foot open look. After Durant put the Thunder ahead with his shot-clock-draining 3-pointer, Kobe couldn't match it with 10 seconds left. The Thunder will look to close out the series tomorrow night back in Oklahoma City.
SPOOKY 2-0 1.000
doof 1-1 .500
JB 1-3 .250 0-2 0/U
overall 4-4 .500
sides 4-2 .667
totals 0-2 .000
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