Kawhi Leonard and Lou Williams spark comeback win for LA Clippers over Portland Trailblazers as they show off throwback Buffalo Braves uniforms
- LA Clippers came back courtesy of Kawhi Leonard and Lou Williams
- Combination proved lethal late in the game and they played in retro kits
- Uniforms were worn to celebrate the Buffalo Braves franchise 50th anniversary
The LA Clippers were inspired to a 107-101 comeback win over the Portland Trailblazers by Kawhi Leonard and Lou Williams in throwback Buffalo Braves jerseys on Thursday night.
The players donned orange and black trimmed kits to celebrate the franchise’s 50th anniversary, representing their years in New York state from 1970-78.
In the retro gear, Lou Williams made a go-ahead jumper with 58 seconds left, then added a 3-pointer and finished with 26 points to lift Los Angeles over the Trail Blazers 107-101 for coach Doc Rivers’ 900th career victory.
Kawhi Leonard (left) helped inspire the Los Angeles Clippers to victory on Thursday night
Lou Williams was also effective late in the game in the team’s throwback jersey
‘Doc never stops going and grinding,’ Leonard said. ‘He never gets bored.’
There was an exuberant atmosphere with the first 5,000 fans given tube socks. The Blazers also are marking 50 years in existence.
Charlotte Hornets 87-108 Boston Celtics
San Antonio Spurs 121-112 Oklahoma City Thunder
Phoenix Suns 108-124 Miami Heat
LA Clippers 107-101 Portland Trailblazers
Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum led Portland with 22 points apiece, but surprisingly both were shut out in the fourth quarter. That’s usually Lillard’s time to shine, but the Clippers’ defence stood firm.
‘Usually I can make those shots down the stretch, but they weren’t falling,’ Lillard said. ‘They were coming out to guard me and picking up full court.’
Lillard missed four shots and went 0 for 3 from 3-point range, while McCollum also missed four shots.
The retro kit was to pay homage to the Buffalo Braves of the franchise’s 50th anniversary
The kits were worn on the same night Portland were celebrating their 50th anniversary as well
‘It’s the third game that we’ve won, in my opinion, completely because of our defence,’ Rivers said. ‘Our offence was below average. If you can win a game and not play well offensively, that says a lot about your team.’
Leonard had 27 points, 13 rebounds and six turnovers after missing a nationally televised loss to Milwaukee the previous night as part of load management for his knee.
Leonard and Williams combined to score the Clippers’ final 15 points. Leonard sealed the win with four straight free throws as fans chanted ‘MVP! MVP!’
‘The Lou-him combination was lethal down the stretch,’ Rivers said.
The Clippers host the Toronto Raptors on Monday and the Blazers welcome the Brooklyn Nets on Friday.
It was a night to forget for Damian Lillard as he was shut out in the fourth quarter
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