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Clippers continue upswing, beat Golden State in exhibition game

They show signs of a team that is coming together in 88-71 win at Staples Center. DeAndre Jordan has a double-double with 18 points and 12 rebounds; Blake Griffin has 18 points and seven rebounds.

October 23, 2012
  • Blake Griffin catches a pass as Warriors forward Carl Landry defends him.
Blake Griffin catches a pass as Warriors forward Carl Landry defends him. (Stephen Dunn / Getty Images )

In one week, the Clippers will open the regular season against the Memphis Grizzlies at Staples Center.

Meanwhile, the Clippers will finish out the exhibition season with the hope they can continue to improve.

They played their second game in three days, beating the Golden State Warriors, 88-71, Monday at Staples, showing signs of a team that is coming together.

DeAndre Jordan had another double-double with 18 points on eight-for-11 shooting and 12 rebounds. He also had three blocked shots in 24 minutes.

Blake Griffin had 18 points, seven rebounds and six assists in 25 minutes.

The Clippers led by as much as 28 points and improved to 3-3 in the exhibition season.

"I think for the most part I feel pretty good about where we're at," Clippers Coach Vinny Del Negro said. "But we still have a long ways to go, a lot of things to put in, a lot of connecting to do as a group."

It has been somewhat difficult for Del Negro to connect the team because of injuries to key players.

Chauncey Billups, recovering from surgery to repair a torn left Achilles' tendon, isn't expected back until sometime in November.

Reserves Lamar Odom (bone bruise in his left knee) and Grant Hill (bone bruise in his right knee) have been set back by injuries.

Del Negro said "there is a chance" Odom and Hill won't play in the last two exhibition games — Wednesday against the Lakers and Thursday in Denver.

"Grant's is probably a little bit worse than Lamar's," Del Negro said. "But everyone handles those things differently or responds differently."

Del Negro said the hope is that he can get his players healthy enough to practice.

"I'd like to get our rotations down and kind of get set rotations a little bit," he said. "But it's difficult with guys missing and being out. We're trying to get there, obviously, before the first game so guys have a feel for where they are at."

Etc.

In the most recent survey of the 30 NBA general managers by NBA.com, Chris Paul was selected as the league's best point guard with 69% of the votes and as the best leader with 27.6% of the votes.

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant was voted the best shooting guard with 66.7% of the votes, Lakers center Dwight Howard the best center (93.3%) and defensive player (60%), Miami's LeBron James the MVP (66.7%) and best small forward (73.3%), Minnesota's Kevin Love the best power forward (30%) — Blake Griffin was tied for fifth with Boston's Kevin Garnett (6.7%) — and the Heat as the team that will win the NBA championship again (70%).

broderick.turner@latimes.com

twitter.com/BA_Turner

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