NBA: Leonard leads Clippers to blowout of Blazers | Inquirer Sports
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Leonard leads Clippers to blowout of Blazers

/ 04:01 PM December 31, 2020
Kawhi Leonard NBA

 Kawhi Leonard of the LA Clippers celebrates and his basket with Lou Williams and Patrick Beverley during a 128-105 Clippers win at Staples Center on December 30, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. Harry How/Getty Images/AFP

Kawhi Leonard recorded 28 points, seven assists and three steals in his return to the lineup, and he led the Los Angeles Clippers to a 128-105 victory over the visiting Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night.

Paul George added 23 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists as Los Angeles posted its second straight blowout victory following a franchise-worst, 51-point loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.

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Leonard sported a mask after missing two games due to a mouth laceration that required eight stitches. He took an elbow to his face from teammate Serge Ibaka last Friday in a victory over the Denver Nuggets.

CJ McCollum made 7 of 11 3-point attempts while scoring 25 points for the Trail Blazers. Damian Lillard scored 20 points but was just 3 of 14 from the field, including missing all eight of his shots from behind the arc.

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Los Angeles has won each of its past two games by 23 points, as it posted a 124-101 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday.

The Clippers were 18 of 38 from 3-point range against Portland and shot 49.5 percent from the field overall. George led the way with four 3-pointers while Leonard and Ibaka made three apiece.

Lou Williams added 15 points off the bench for the Clippers. Ibaka had 11 points and eight rebounds while Nicolas Batum and Reggie Jackson each scored 11 points.

Carmelo Anthony scored 15 points for the Trail Blazers, who played without Gary Trent Jr. (calf). Enes Kanter added 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Portland shot 42.1 percent from the field, including 12 of 38 from behind the arc.

The Clippers set the tone by connecting on 8 of 12 3-point attempts in the opening quarter en route to a 37-26 lead.

Leonard’s three-point play pushed Los Angeles’ lead above 20 for the first time at 67-46 with 3:09 left in half.

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The Clippers made 6 of 9 from behind the arc in the second quarter, leaving them at 14 of 21 at the break.

Los Angeles didn’t allow Portland to get back into the game in the third quarter as it scored the first nine points and 16 of the first 21 to increase the margin to a game-high 30 with 7:21 left in the stanza.

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TAGS: Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Clippers, NBA, Portland Trail Blazers
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