In the second-highest scoring game in NBA history, the Clippers lose to the Kings.

In the second-highest scoring game in NBA history, the Clippers lose to the Kings.

In Los Angeles With a full house, supporters taking photographs with their phones of the newest Clippers player during his debut, and high hopes for a win, this game had all the makings of a playoff match.

The second-highest scoring game in NBA history, a 176-175 double-overtime defeat to the Sacramento Kings took place on Friday night at Arena, and Russell Westbrook didn’t let everyone down in his debut. That was his first game since joining the Clippers earlier this week after being dealt by the Lakers two weeks before.

The point guard made the Clippers’ first two free throws and then received a hearty standing ovation in the same venue where he had previously been jeered. Afterwards he handed passes to Mason Plumlee and Marcus Morris Sr. Not with a triumph, but rather with a chaotic, exciting game that the Clippers lost in the last minutes, the Westbrook era had started.

With 4:28 remaining in regulation, the Clippers led by as many as 14 points. In two overtime sessions that followed, the hosts and the Kings competed to outdo each other. Kawhi Leonard led the Clippers with a season-high 44 points, one shy of matching his career best, but the Kings capitalised on 25 Clipper errors to score crucial baskets in the dying seconds from Malik Monk (career-high 45 points), and De’Aaron Fox (42).

While the Clippers still had a double-digit lead in regulation, coach Tyronn Lue claimed that turnovers were the cause of their demise.

According to Lue, “I believe we had three consecutive live ball turnovers, which enabled them to come out and score six points easily without having to fight for them.” It’s difficult to attempt to win the game when you have 25 turnovers off of 42 points.

With 1:57 left in the second overtime, the Clippers led 175-169 until the Kings (34-25) scored the last seven points, including Fox’s jumper with 36.5 seconds left. The Clippers (33-29) had the last chance, but Nicolas Batum’s 3-point effort at the final buzzer was off the mark.

Westbrook, who began, participated in both overtime periods, scoring twice and dishing out twice. In 39 minutes, he ended with 17 points, 14 assists, five rebounds, and seven turnovers. With 1:49 left in the second overtime, he fouled out. When it came to players making their Clippers debuts, Andre Miller’s 2002 performance was surpassed by his 14 assists.

Westbrook said, “It felt fantastic simply to be back on the court.” It goes without saying that you want to win; that’s the most crucial aspect. I’ll watch the movie and prepare for Sunday’s trip.

He appreciated the kind welcome after a turbulent season and a half as a Laker.

Just the energy in the place is a gift, according to Westbrook. “It was amazing to see the supporters’ energy and general support, not just for myself but for the whole club, and I hope we can maintain that as the season progresses. When a chance arises, I’ll play as hard as I can to do my part.

This seemed to be very much like the Russ of a few years ago, not current history, as Lue had said the previous day that he simply wanted “Russ to be Russ.” When it made sense, he took shots, pushed the tempo, played defence, and passed the ball.

We must do all that I, he, and the team must do in order to win, according to Lue. “And he agrees with that.”

Mason Plumlee’s first start and second game as a Clipper were both successful, which was a treat for the audience. The 7-foot centre, who was stepping in for Ivica Zubac because of a knee injury, was everywhere on the floor. His long arms were constantly collecting rebounds, blocking shots, and chasing down loose balls while also contributing eight points and nine rebounds.

Nonetheless, Leonard was the star of the show, scoring 30 or more points for the eighth time in his last 17 games. In 46 minutes, he made 6 of 9 three-pointers, shot 16 of 22 from the field, and made all of his free throw attempts. His third quarter total of 21 points was a career best for a quarter.

Lue praised Leonard, saying, “I thought he did a terrific job getting to a place with the 3-point shots and attacking the basket.”

In 41 minutes, Paul George scored 34 points, grabbed 10 rebounds, while Norman Powell chipped in with 24 points.

On his first long-range jumper in the first quarter, George went above Dirk Nowitzki and into 15th place on the NBA’s all-time 3-point field goal record. He added four more before the game was ended.

Monk and Fox, who also had 12 assists and five steals and became only the 12th player since 1973–74 to have 40 points, 10 assists, and five steals in a game, overshadowed Leonard’s achievement.

Early on in the game, the Clippers capitalised on the enthusiasm of the fans to stay up with the Kings, who have the best road record in the Western Conference. In a tight contest, the first half was a shootout with both sides hitting close to 60% of their shots. The Clippers were in the lead 80-76 at the conclusion of the first half.

The audience enthusiastically applauded each Clippers basket, of which there were many as the game continued to be a high-scoring back-and-forth contest. They had a season-high 26 3-pointers and shot 60.2% from the field. The Kings shot 58.6% overall and hit 18 3-pointers, with four additional players scoring in double digits.

Yet in the last two minutes of regulation, the momentum changed. With 4:25 remaining, the Clippers led 145-131, but their advantage was cut to 147-140 when Fox stole the ball from George and scored. After that, Keegan Murray scored a layup after intercepting a poor pass from George to cut the deficit to 147-142.

Powell committed an offensive foul, sparking a 10-0 Sacramento run that resulted in baskets from Fox and Domantas Sabonis to end it, giving the Clippers a one-point advantage at 147-146 with 1:22 remaining.

Westbrook scored on a short jumper to give the Clippers a 151-148 lead after the teams swapped free throws. When Fox made a layup for the Kings, George made two free throws with 8.5 seconds remaining.

Monk’s 3-pointer tied the score at 153 with 1.1 seconds left to play, forcing the first overtime.

The Clippers lead 162-156 with 3:04 remaining in the first overtime until the Kings tied the score with six straight baskets. Monk scored a pair of free throws with 20.4 seconds left to tie the game at 164. The Clippers had a chance to win it, but Leonard’s tip-in attempt at the buzzer fell short.

Lue said, “I felt it was a tremendous game, particularly for the fans. “Crazy game – a lot of momentum swings, but we did some nice things,” said one player. “On defence, I simply felt we had a lot of breakdowns. The speed they play at, they put you in some terrible spots with Fox being the head of the snake.”

The Kings coach Brown agreed that the contest had a little of everything.

Brown stated, “I can see how this game would have been quite entertaining to watch from a fan’s perspective. Both the defence and shot-making were outstanding. There was exceptional skill on show. Bravo to the athletes.

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