Clippers Roll Past Hornets in Dominating Fashion – 213 Hoops


The LA Clippers capped off a five-game home stand with a 126-105 win over the visiting Charlotte Hornets.

Clippers fans were treated to some good news before tipoff on Wednesday against the Hornets when it was announced that Paul George, Reggie Jackson, Ivica Zubac and Norman Powell would all be returning to the lineup. For George, Jackson and Zubac, it was a brief two-game absence. For Powell, he hadn’t played since Nov. 29 with a groin injury.

Once the game began, it was just more good news for Clippers fans, as the team came out strong and displayed the type of cohesiveness and chemistry that has escaped them for much of this season.

The energy in the crowd was apparent from the get-go and the players themselves took notice.

“It felt like opening night a little bit when we came out,” Nicolas Batum said. “The atmosphere was different. I think people have been waiting for this for a long time. People talk about yeah we have a good team, we have a great roster. People were getting excited. . .When the news came out today, people got excited. They want to see us, they want to see what we’re about. We showed them a little bit tonight. Now it’s going to be game one of many, many, many more.”

In all seriousness, the game was over by the end of the first quarter. The Clippers found themselves up 37-19 and shooting 55 percent from the field while holding the Hornets to 23 percent shooting. That lead only ballooned in the second quarter to 60-27 and by the half the Clippers led 71-40.

The only blemishes in the first half were the 13 turnovers and a brief dust-up between Terance Mann and Kelly Oubre Jr. that resulted in an offensive foul on Mann and double technical fouls.

In the second half, the Hornets tried to make things interesting by cutting the Clipper lead to 14 at one point, but the Clippers regrouped, retook control, and cruised across the finish line.

After the game, head coach Tyronn Lue echoed Batum’s statement of having a fully healthy roster for the first time since the opening game of the season against the LA Lakers.

“It’s just good to see everybody back on the floor. I think that’s the biggest thing, just seeing everybody healthy,” Lue said. “And now we got to continue to build something. First game under our belt but we got a long way to go just kind of figuring out the rotations, minutes restrictions and the flow of the game and a lot of other things.”

Although the game was a blowout against one of the worst teams in the NBA, this was a game the Clippers needed. As they get set to embark on a five-game road trip that will carry them through the New Year, the Clippers needed a big win with every player available and contributing.

“It’s good that we can start building towards that, it’s just great that we’ve all battled back,” Paul George said. “We’ve had some adversity, we’re in a good position to finish this year off healthy and playing against some good competition coming up.”

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