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Balanced Clippers defeat Cavaliers, 105-89

Six L.A. players score in double figures, led by Jamal Crawford with 24 points.

March 01, 2013|By Broderick Turner

CLEVELAND — The Clippers were glad to pass around the credit Friday night. After all, they did such a good job of doing that with the basketball.

Six Clippers scored in double figures in a 105-89 victory over the Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena, their first win in Cleveland since 2002.

"It keeps the defense guessing. You can't tell where the points are going to come from," said Chris Paul, who had 11 points and 15 assists. "When you have a lot of guys scoring, they load up to try to stop one thing and then we have somebody else scoring. It makes our offense run much smoother."

Jamal Crawford was the smoothest of all the Clippers.

He had a team-high 24 points on eight-for-14 shooting, including three for five on three-pointers, one of which turned into a four-point play.

Blake Griffin had 16 points on seven-for-12 shooting, and 11 rebounds. He also had three assists, three blocked shots and three steals.

Caron Butler had 13 points and Lamar Odom had 10 points and seven rebounds. DeAndre Jordan had 10 points on five-for-six shooting, and five rebounds.

"It's always nice to have a lot of people score," Griffin said. "But really it's more about our movement. Our movement was good tonight and then that allowed everybody to score."

The Clippers shot 51.8% from the field, despite making only 28% (seven of 25) of their three-pointers.

The Cavaliers played without All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving, who missed his third straight game with a hyperextended right knee. Former Clippers guard Shaun Livingston started in place of Irving.

Even though the Cavaliers had five players score in double figures, led by Dion Waiters' 17 points, they didn't have enough to deal with a Clippers team that won both games on this two-game trip.

The Clippers had 26 assists on 43 field goals. They had 10 steals and outrebounded the Cavaliers, 39-32.

"They turned it up a notch and we weren't able to turn it up to the top notch they were able to turn it up to," Cleveland Coach Byron Scott said. "That's just a very good team that we lost to."

The Cavaliers closed what had been a 13-point deficit to 62-59 in the middle of the third quarter, but then the Clippers took control.

When Crawford made a three-pointer from the corner while being fouled by Marreese Speights, he made the free throw for a four-point play, giving the Clippers an 85-70 lead early in the fourth.

Later, Crawford then banked in a three-pointer to beat the 24-second clock for a 90-75 lead.

"Are you kidding me?" a fan yelled after Crawford's shot.

Paul made a three-pointer for a 93-75 lead and that was it for the Cavaliers.

"Nobody cares who gets the credit," Crawford said. "Everybody plays for each other. As a defensive team, how can you counter that? You can't just key in on one or two or three guys because the ball is just moving."

broderick.turner@latimes.com

Twitter: @BA_Turner

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