Clippers snap two-game skid, rout Trailblazers, 116-103

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports
The Clippers led the Blazers by as many as 27 points in Portland.

The Los Angeles Clippers traveled to Portland and defeated the Trailblazers for the third consecutive time this season.

Turning  point: The Clippers had a slow start Wednesday, trailing 27-28 after the first 12 minutes of play. In that period both teams shot 52% but Portland made two more threes.  By halftime LA caught a lead thanks to James Harden who dished some imperative and timely assists. 

Thanks to a 19-2 run in the third quarter, the Clippers had the advantage going  into the   final period. Kawhi Leonard  scored 17 points in just that third period  alone, giving LA the 94-70 advantage into the fourth.

What it means: Wednesday’s win gives LA some breathing room in the standings after coming within one loss from the five-seed spot three days ago. Now, the Clippers(43-25) latest victory provides the team with a one-game lead over the New OrleansPelicans for the fourth-seed spot in the Western Conference Standings.

Hits: All of the Clippers starters set the tone for the game, and finished with 10 or more points. James Harden was one who had an impressive game, scoring 19 points and collecting 14 assists. Center Ivica Zubac also set a new career-high against Portland with four steals for LA.

Misses: Bones Hyland, who has been stepping in for the Clippers more as of recent, had a slow start in Portland. After the first quarter Hyland was 0-2 in threes and from the field, as well as had one live ball turnover and a foul.

Stat of the game: When Paul George sank his first three-pointer Wednesday, he set a new  Clippers franchise record. George passed JJ Reddick for threes in a season with 202 and counting.

He  finished against Portland with 27 points while shooting  10-18 from the field and collecting seven rebounds and four assists.  George has been hot for the Clippers lately, scoring over 20 in his past eight straight games.

Up next: The Clippers have  a chance to stack another win in Portland as soon as Friday when they take  on the Trailblazers again. It will wrap up the regular season series between the two teams, which LA leads 3-0.