Pelicans’ blowout LA Clippers in 123-104 hammering
By Akram Miah
The Los Angeles Clippers lose their second straight game of a back-to-back as New Orleans Pelicans win at Staples Center after a career night from Jonas Valanciunas and yet a disappointing showing again from the Los Angeles Clippers to shock them in a 123- 104 score line.
The Lithuanian center scored a career high in points by scoring 39 points against the Clippers defence which is one of the big defensive units in the league.
He hit seven three-pointers all in the first half to lead his team heading into the second quarter by 15 and they took control from there.
Coming into the league, Valanciunas was not known for his ‘shooting prowess’, but more of a traditional big man. But with the need of more frontcourt shooting in the last few seasons, Valanciunas has been working on his three pointers as evident.
6’10 center also grabbed 15 rebounds on the night including seven offensive rebounds as he led the Pels in both statistical categories.
With that, he also becomes the second player to put up 35 points, 10 rebounds and seven threes in a single game this season.
"Guys were calling him Dirk Valanciunas," Pelicans coach Willie Green said, referring to the Dallas Mavericks German legend Dirk Nowitzki.
The center may not be anywhere near Nowitzki’s status, but this is a performance that is stunning and encouraging for New Orleans.
With star player Zion Williamson looking to come back to practice with the team after sustaining an injury in the offseason, they can look to move the big man to the three-point line so Williamson can have the lane to himself.
For the Clippers, this is now their second straight loss after suffering a loss yesterday to the Golden State Warriors.
This is a worrying loss for the LA team as they now sit just above .500 and move down the standings in the West.
For a team that is known for its defensive intensity and tempo. They lacked in that department by allowing teams such as Memphis Grizzlies and New Orleans score more than 110 points.
The Clippers have now suffered two drafts at the hands of the Pelicans.
This victory for New Orleans moves them to 6-17 record and they stay 14th in the Western Conference. Whereas LA Clippers move to 11-10 and move down to fifth in the West standings.
The Clippers stay in LA for their next game as they welcome the Sacramento Kings to town, while New Orleans will head back home to the Smoothie King Center where they will host Luka Doncic’s Dallas Mavericks.