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March 4, 2013 | By Mike Bresnahan
Kobe Bryant on television saw Serge Ibaka punch Clipper forward Blake Griffin below the belt Sunday. Bryant didn't like it. In fact, Bryant didn't hide what he would have done if the Oklahoma City forward hit him the same way. "I probably would have smacked him in the mouth," Bryant said Monday at practice. But what about the, uh, initial pain? Griffin stayed down on the court for a while. "I would have dealt with the pain afterward," Bryant said. Griffin's pain might be the Lakers' gain.
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January 29, 2014 | By Ben Bolch
Doc Rivers' message had a nice ring to it: Vote for D.J. The Clippers coach said Wednesday he had lobbied his fellow Western Conference coaches to cast an All-Star vote for center DeAndre Jordan , who has become one of the game's elite big men in his sixth NBA season. "I got a great response," Rivers said, "but that's why you go under a curtain and you vote for real because [they say], 'Yeah, I'm going to vote for him' and then they [pull] that other lever. " The coaches will select the seven reserves from the West who will be announced Thursday afternoon on TNT: three frontcourt players, two backcourt players and two wild-card players from any position.
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SPORTS
March 5, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
Blake Griffin expected Oklahoma City Thunder forward Serge Ibaka to be suspended and fined for striking him below the belt in Sunday's game at Staples Center. Ibaka was called for a flagrant 1 foul on the play late in the fourth quarter of the Thunder's 108-104 victory. The NBA announced Tuesday that Ibaka's foul was upgraded to a flagrant 2 and he was fined $25,000 for striking Griffin in the groin area, but Ibaka was not suspended. Before the ruling was handed down, Griffin said he didn't "see how it could be let go" by the league with only a fine.
SPORTS
December 29, 2013
Looking ahead HOUSTON AT OKLAHOMA CITY: Sunday, 4 p.m. PST. TV: NBA TV. These teams last met in a roller coaster first-round playoff series. In Game 2, Rockets guard Patrick Beverley went for a steal and plowed into the Thunder's All-Star guard Russell Westbrook, who suffered a torn meniscus and needed surgery on his right knee. The Thunder eliminated Houston in six games, but without Westbrook it fell to Memphis in the second round. Forget about a Westbrook-Beverley rematch, though.
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June 3, 2012 | By Mike Bresnahan, Los Angeles Times
OKLAHOMA CITY - Kevin Durant was happily the sidekick, watching as seldom-used big men Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins stole the first three quarters. But then came the important minutes. Time for the Oklahoma City Thunder to show it wasn't too young, too reckless, too anything to have a chance in the Western Conference finals. Durant was ready. Was he ever. He scored 16 consecutive points in the fourth quarter and the Thunder forged a series tie by taking Game 4 against the San Antonio Spurs, 109-103.
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March 3, 2013 | By Ben Bolch
Serge Ibaka's vicious right hand to the groin of Blake Griffin late in the fourth quarter Sunday served as only a prelude to the real smackdown administered by the Oklahoma City Thunder. Boom! Russell Westbrook accelerated past a bevy of defenders for a layup, the Thunder point guard wiping out a Clippers lead that lasted all of five seconds. Whack! Ibaka took a pass from Westbrook and made a layup while drawing Griffin's sixth foul, the final indignity of a maddening afternoon for the Clippers power forward.
SPORTS
November 17, 2012
Looking ahead Clippers at Oklahoma City, Wednesday, 4:30 p.m. PST These are two young powerhouses in the West. The Thunder's expected return trip to the Finals seemed to hit a detour when they unloaded James Harden, the sixth man of the year, to Houston. But his replacement Kevin Martin can find the net, Serge Ibaka is developing a jump shot and Kevin Durant is hitting the boards better than ever. The Clippers, already with All-Stars Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, loaded up their reserves in the off-season, including former sixth man of the year Jamal Crawford, who can outscore an opponent's entire bench.
SPORTS
April 16, 2012
With the NBA playoffs around the corner, writers from around Tribune Co., the parent of the Los Angeles Times and other papers, predict which teams will be playing for the championship in June. Check back throughout the day for their responses and join the conversation with a comment of your own. Teddy Greenstein, Chicago Tribune I'll take the team with the Big Three, but not the celebrated LeBron-Wade-Bosh combo. I'll go with the Durant-Westbrook-Harden triumvirate that makes Oklahoma City an even more lethal offensive club than the flashy Heat.
SPORTS
May 4, 2013 | By Ben Bolch
Western Conference semifinals No. 1 Thunder vs. No. 5 Grizzlies Season series: Grizzlies, 2-1. Key stat: Memphis power forward Zach Randolph averaged 24.8 points over the Grizzlies' final four games of their first-round series victory over the Clippers. Outlook: Memphis was a tough matchup for Oklahoma City even before Thunder guard Russell Westbrook suffered a knee injury that will sideline him for the rest of the playoffs. The Grizzlies' strength is in the post, where Randolph and center Marc Gasol pounded their young and athletic counterparts in the first round and are certainly eager to try to do the same to Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins.
SPORTS
December 29, 2013
Looking ahead HOUSTON AT OKLAHOMA CITY: Sunday, 4 p.m. PST. TV: NBA TV. These teams last met in a roller coaster first-round playoff series. In Game 2, Rockets guard Patrick Beverley went for a steal and plowed into the Thunder's All-Star guard Russell Westbrook, who suffered a torn meniscus and needed surgery on his right knee. The Thunder eliminated Houston in six games, but without Westbrook it fell to Memphis in the second round. Forget about a Westbrook-Beverley rematch, though.
SPORTS
November 21, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
The Clippers know they will have their hands full with the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday night in this back-to-back game for Los Angeles. Not only will the Thunder be looking to exact some revenge from last week's loss to the Clippers at Staples Center, but Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka will be looking to play the entire game this time. Ibaka was ejected from the Clippers-Thunder game last week after getting into an altercation with Matt Barnes. Barnes will miss his second consecutive game with a bruised left eye. The Thunder also will have center Kendrick Perkins this time.
SPORTS
November 20, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
Clippers backup small forward Matt Barnes didn't make the trip to Minneapolis because he has a bruised left eye, the team announced Wednesday afternoon. Barnes was injured during the Clippers' game against the Grizzlies on Monday night when he was hit by an inadvertent elbow from Memphis forward Zach Randolph. The Clippers said Barnes will miss the game against the Timberwolves on Wednesday night and against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday night. With Barnes out, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers probably will turn to rookie Reggie Bullock to provide some backup minutes at small forward behind starter Jared Dudley.
SPORTS
November 20, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
MINNEAPOLIS - Clippers backup small forward Matt Barnes didn't make the trip to Minnesota because he has a bruised left eye, the team announced Wednesday. The Clippers said Barnes has some swelling inside his retina, and that he is going to get some tests run soon. For now, the Clippers said Barnes has been told to get rest and that there is no timetable for his return. "We're going to miss him," Coach Doc Rivers said. Barnes was injured during the game against the Grizzlies on Monday night when he was hit by an inadvertent elbow from Memphis forward Zach Randolph.
SPORTS
November 19, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
MINNEAPOLIS - The back-to-back games the Clippers will play at Minnesota on Wednesday and at Oklahoma City on Thursday were going to be competitive anyway, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said. But the intensity figures to be a notch higher, he said, because his team beat the Timberwolves and Thunder last week in Los Angeles. In addition, all three clubs hope to be the top team in the competitive Western Conference. "Minnesota wants to be a contender. Oklahoma City wants to be one. We want to be one," Rivers said.
SPORTS
November 14, 2013 | Bill Dwyre
For the Clippers, a funny thing happened on the way to a run-and-shoot, razzle-and-dazzle victory Wednesday night over a very good run-and-shoot, razzle-and-dazzle team, the Oklahoma City Thunder. Matt Barnes got in a fight and got thrown out. And that may turn out to be a little turning point for a team just finding its way in a season that will keep coming at us through June. Barnes, you see, may represent a small measure of the kind of toughness a team needs in the NBA to go all the way. Sadly, he carried that toughness a step past logic when he tweeted in anger from the locker room, using the N-word, about being tired of having to stand up for his teammates.
SPORTS
November 14, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
The NBA fined Clippers forward Matt Barnes $25,000 for failing to leave the court promptly after being ejected Wednesday night from the Clippers-Oklahoma City Thunder game and for using inappropriate language on Twitter following his ejection. Rod Thorn, the NBA's president of basketball operations, informed Barnes and the Clippers on Thursday afternoon about the league's decision, saying Barnes violated NBA rules. Because the NBA has penalized Barnes, the “One Penalty” rule in the collective bargaining agreement precludes the Clippers from imposing any additional punishment, said NBA labor expert Larry Coon.
SPORTS
November 13, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
After Clippers backup small forward Matt Barnes was ejected from the game with 6.2 seconds left in the second quarter after an altercation with Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka, Barnes took to Twitter to express himself. Barnes tweeted: "I love my teammates like family, but I'm DONE standing up for these ... ! All this ... does is cost me money. " A little skirmish broke out in the second quarter after Thabo Sefolosha fouled Blake Griffin, who then became entangled with Ibaka. That's when Barnes stepped in and pushed Ibaka, who pushed Barnes back.
SPORTS
November 13, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
After Clippers backup small forward Matt Barnes was ejected from the game with 6.2 seconds left in the second quarter after an altercation with Oklahoma City's Serge Ibaka, Barnes took to Twitter to express himself. Barnes tweeted: "I love my teammates like family, but I'm DONE standing up for these ... ! All this ... does is cost me money. " A little skirmish broke out in the second quarter after Thabo Sefolosha fouled Blake Griffin, who then became entangled with Ibaka. That's when Barnes stepped in and pushed Ibaka, who pushed Barnes back.
SPORTS
November 13, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
This was yet another game for the Clippers to measure themselves against one of the NBA's elite teams with two of the league's top players. The Clippers passed this test because six players scored in double figures and because they played their best defense of the game in the second half of their 111-103 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night at Staples Center. "It's a regular game now. It's one of 82 now," Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said. "But during the game, it wasn't [a regular game]
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