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Griffin, Clippers crush Warriors to even series

AP

After getting knocked down in their playoff opener, Blake Griffin and the Clippers answered with a dominant performance in shutting down the Warriors as soon as the game began.

Griffin scored a career playoff-high 35 points without a foul and Los Angeles led all the way in a 138-98 rout Monday night to even their first-round series at a game apiece.

“We were really aggressive on our defense,” Griffin said. “When you play more aggressive you stay out of foul trouble.”

Chris Paul added 12 points and 10 assists for the Clippers, who started the game on a 14-4 run and kept on going, maintaining a sizable double-digit lead through the final three quarters. They finished with franchise records for points and largest victory margin in a playoff game.

“When we play with that force and thrust, it’s hard to defend us,” Paul said.

Game 3 is seet for Thursday in Oakland.

All the foul trouble that plagued Griffin and Paul in the Clippers’ four-point loss in Game 1 belonged to the Warriors this time.

Stephen Curry scored 20 of his 24 points in the third quarter, when the Warriors never got closer than 25 points, while he played with four fouls. Klay Thompson finished with seven points — 15 under his average — and four fouls.

Andre Iguodala, who fouled out of Game 1, and Jermaine O’Neal had four points and three fouls each.

The Clippers’ defense forced 26 turnovers, and offensively they had their way — getting out in transition, attacking the rim and throwing lobs that led to dunks.

“We were awful,” Warriors coach Mark Jackson said. “They disrupted us with their intensity. That was a desperate basketball team we played against.”

Los Angeles shot 57 percent, made 12 of 25 3-pointers, hit 32 of 35 free throws for a playoff-record 91 percent and owned a 25-13 edge in fastbreak points.

“We really kept the game simple. When a guy had an open shot, he took it. When he didn’t, he passed,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “It’s very difficult to guard when the ball moves as quickly as it did.”

Grizz 111, Thunder 105 (OT)

In Oklahoma City, Zach Randolph scored 25 points to help Memphis defeat the Thunder and tie their first-round playoff series at one game apiece.

Mike Conley added 19 points and 12 assists for the Grizzlies.

Kevin Durant had 36 points and 11 rebounds for Oklahoma City. Russell Westbrook scored 29 points for the Thunder, but he made just 11 of 28 shots.

Randolph’s layup with 26 seconds left in overtime put Memphis up by two. Oklahoma City’s Serge Ibaka traveled, giving the ball back to the Grizzlies. Courtney Lee made two free throws for Memphis to make it a four-point game. Durant missed a 3-pointer and Randolph made two free throws with nine seconds left to put the game out of reach.