Clippers finish off 16-0 month
LOS ANGELES — Jamal Crawford scored 11 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter, and the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Utah Jazz 107-96 on Sunday night for their 17th consecutive victory, becoming the third team in NBA history to record a perfect month.
The Clippers went 16-0 in December to join the 1995-95 San Antonio Spurs and 1971-72 Lakers as the only teams to go undefeated over a month. Their franchise-record winning streak is the longest since Boston won 19 in a row four years ago.
Caron Butler led the Clippers with 29 points, making all six of his 3-pointers. Chris Paul added 19 points and nine assists to help them maintain the league’s best record at 25-6.
Al Jefferson scored 30 points — one off his season high — to lead Utah, which fell victim for the third time during the Clippers’ streak. The Jazz lost 116-114 on Friday when the Clippers rallied from 19 points down, and they were beaten 105-104 on Dec. 3, both times at home.
Gordon Hayward added 16 points as the Jazz lost their third in a row and seventh in the last nine games.
Crawford keyed a 10-5 run to open the fourth, highlighted by a 3-pointer and a fast break pull-up jumper that helped the Clippers extend their lead to 89-81. Paul and Griffin didn’t join the second unit until 5:55 remained and Utah had closed within four on a basket by Derrick Favors.
That was as close as the Jazz got. The Clippers made 9 of 10 free throws down the stretch, and their defense held Utah to one field goal in the final 3:38.
SPURS 111, MAVERICKS 86
DALLAS — Tony Parker had 21 points and nine assists, Manu Ginobili had 20 points, and San Antonio handed Dallas its sixth straight loss.
KINGS 118, CELTICS 96
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Isaiah Thomas scored 27 points and made one of Sacramento’s two four-point plays in the second half as the Kings handed Boston its third consecutive lopsided loss on a California road swing.
PISTONS 96, BUCKS 94
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Tayshaun Prince made two free throws with 10.9 seconds left to give Detroit a victory over Milwaukee after the Pistons blew a 14-point lead.