NBA: Kawhi Leonard, Paul George carry Clippers past Hawks
Kawhi Leonard and Paul George combined to score 55 points while leading the Clippers to a 120-113 road win over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday that extended Los Angeles’ season-best winning streak to five games.
Leonard put up 32 points on 12-of-20 shooting, including 5-of-10 success from 3-point range, and he added eight rebounds and four assists. George scored 23 with seven rebounds and six assists.
Los Angeles also got 18 points from Ivica Zubac and 16 points off the bench from Reggie Jackson.
Atlanta was led by Trae Young with 31 points and 10 assists, John Collins with 16 points and Dejounte Murray with 15 points and eight assists. Clint Capela contributed 12 points and 13 rebounds.
The Clippers built their biggest lead of the night when Zubac’s free throw made it 106-92 with 6:03 remaining, only to have the Hawks go on a 15-5 run to cut the deficit to four points on a 3-pointer from De’Andre Hunter with 2:11 to go.
Kawhi Leonard could not be stopped tonight! 😤
— NBA Fantasy (@NBAFantasy) January 29, 2023
Los Angeles held off the rally with a pair of free throws by Leonard, a short jumper by George and a 3-pointer from Nicolas Batum that upped the lead to nine with 49.1 seconds left.
Los Angeles broke a three-game losing streak in Atlanta.
Atlanta led 28-22 after the first quarter and was ahead by as many as 11 midway in the second quarter when the Clippers went on a 15-3 run and took a 45-44 lead on a short hook shot by Zubac. Los Angeles kept the momentum, scored 36 points in the quarter and led 58-53 at halftime.
Young scored 10 points in the third quarter and helped the Hawks cut the deficit to 84-81 going into the fourth quarter.
The Clippers were without Marcus Morris Sr. (bruised rib) and John Wall (abdominal soreness). The Hawks were at full strength.
Atlanta will begin a five-game Western Conference road trip on Monday against the Portland Trail Blazers. Los Angeles plays the second leg of a six-game road trip on Sunday against the Cleveland Cavaliers.