SACRAMENTO (AP) — The Los Angeles Clippers built and blew several big leads while trying to extend their five-year winning streak in Sacramento.
Each time they let one slip away, Tobias Harris or Montrezl Harrell were there to get Doc Rivers’ team going again.
Harris scored 28 points, Harrell added 24 and the Clippers beat the Kings 133-121 on Thursday night.
“We couldn’t get away from them,” Rivers said “It’s one of those games where a lot of teams fold, but we didn’t. Every time they made a run either Tobias or (Danilo Gallinari) or Trez made a big play. That’s what type of team we have. That’s why we’re so good.”
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 17 points, and Gallinari and Avery Bradley scored 16 apiece as the Clippers won their ninth in 10 games. Los Angeles extended its streak in Sacramento to 12 games.
Bogdan Bogdanovic scored a career-high 26 for Sacramento. Marvin Bagley III added 18 points and 10 rebounds.
Kings coach Dave Joerger faced questions before the game about problems between him and the team’s front office after The Athletic reported that Joerger asked assistant general manager Brandon Williams to leave the team’s shootaround earlier Thursday.
It comes less than two weeks after a report by Yahoo Sports suggesting that Joerger was in trouble with management over his handling of the team’s younger players, specifically Bagley, the second overall pick who has come off the bench in all 21 games this season.
“My job is to make sure that we are as prepared as we can be for the task in front of us and to try to limit as much distractions as possible,” Joerger said. “I think the sunshine on this team, this group of players, and our city has been as high as it’s been since I’ve been in the NBA. I’m just trying to keep the distractions to a minimum with our group. I love the game.
I know that this is just part sometimes that comes with it.”
The Kings held together pretty well against Los Angeles before Harris and Harrell helped the Clippers pull away in the fourth quarter.
After Bogdanovic’s layup cut the Clippers’ lead to 112-108, Harris and Harrell combined for 11 consecutive points, including a pair of three-point plays by Harrell.
“We had a little lapse but we kept fighting through,” Harris said. “When you’ve got different options to go to in the fourth quarter to win a game, especially down the stretch, that’s key.”
The teams exchanged 42-point quarters in the first half.
Los Angeles led by 18 in the first quarter but Sacramento went on three big runs in the second quarter and closed within 71-68 at halftime.
Clippers: Los Angeles hasn’t lost in Sacramento since March 19, 2013. ... Martin Gortat had nine points in 18 minutes after getting into early foul trouble. Gortat picked up his third foul with five minutes left in the first half. . Los Angeles shot 68 percent (17 of 25) in the first quarter.
Kings: Bagley left the game in the fourth quarter with back tightness. ... The 42 points scored by Los Angeles matches the most allowed in a single quarter by Sacramento this season.
Lou Williams of the Clippers has scored 10 points or more in 63 consecutive games coming off the bench, the longest by any reserve in the NBA since 1983-84.
KEEPING IT 100
The Clippers have scored 100 points or more in 20 of their 21 games this season. The only time Los Angeles was held under triple digits came in a season-opening 107-98 loss to Denver.
Clippers: Play at Dallas on Sunday.
Kings: Host Indiana on Saturday.
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