With two of the most dynamic offenses in the NBA, even foul trouble to star players on both teams couldn’t slow the excitement down. However, like most playoff basketball, it was getting stops on the defensive end that determined the outcome.
Tied at 105 with 90 seconds left, both teams struggled to execute on the offensive end. After three turnovers and two missed layups in the ensuing minute, free throws decided the final 30 seconds. After bringing the Clippers back from 11 down, Chris Paul didn’t have any magic left in the tank, missing two vital freebies with 11 seconds left.
With Blake Griffin in foul trouble all game and Jamal Crawford unable to hit anything inside the half-court line, the Clippers never got in a rhythm. Outplayed by a highly motivated Golden State squad, Los Angeles learned some valuable lessons in Game 1.