Monta's 32 points lift Warriors past Clippers 104-97

Monta's 32 points lift Warriors past Clippers 104-97
February 21, 2012, 6:05 am
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OAKLAND Ekpe Udoh had a career-high 19 points and eight rebounds in his first start of the season to help the Warriors snap a three-game losing streak. The Warriors, who raised their record to 12-17, play their next six games on the road.Warriors 104, L.A. Clippers 97Player of the game: Monta Ellis had 32 points on 11-for-20 from the field to go along with five rebounds and four assists.Key play: With the Warriors up 100-97 and a minute remaining, Chris Paul was at the top of the circle with Dominic McGuire on him. Paul tried a little shake-and-bake and a little fiddle-faddle but couldnt shake McGuire.Paul eventually raised up from 15 feet, but McGuire was right there to block the shot. The Warriors turned that into two points at the other end and a five-point lead with 54.8 seconds left.Its just a gift, Jackson said of McGuire. What Dom has is a gift. Hell never shoot like Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson or Brandon Rush. Hes a lock-down defender who can guard one through five. Its what he was brought here to do and he does it effectively.Curry quiet: If Stephen Curry isnt the best shooter on the Warriors, hes certainly in the top two. Its curious then why he only took six shots in 33 minutes on Monday night, including zero in the second half.Despite Curry not looking to score, he did have a big assist, finding an open Brandon Rush for a 3-pointer with two minutes remaining that gave the Warriors a 98-97 lead.I thought he picked his spots very effectively, Jackson said of Curry. Didnt force the issue. I thought my backcourt set the tone overall. It was a very good floor game for both guys. There are going to be nights when Steph gets plenty of shots and there are going to be nights when he has to be the point guard out there.Rough third: Warriors coach Mark Jackson has been harping on turnovers for much of the season with his squad. In the third quarter, it was Clippers turnovers that helped the Warriors take a seven-point lead. The Clippers committed seven in the third quarter and 18 for the game leading to 21 Warriors points.Bench missing: Jackson didnt like what he got out of his bench in the first half, playing that group less than usual. Nate Robinson, Klay Thompson and Brandon Rush each played less than seven minutes in the first half and none of them scored.Robinson scored nine points in the second half, though he shot 3-for-8 from the field to do it.Paul early and often: Paul is the kind of point guard who usually lets the game come to him and doesnt look to score until necessary. Well, he got to scoring in a hurry on Monday night, cramming in 20 points in the games first 17 minutes and doing it in efficient fashion.Paul was 5-for-6 from the field, including 3-for-3 from 3-point range, and 5-for-6 from the foul line to start the game.But Paul finished with just 24 points for the night.Udoh for Biedrins: Starting center Andris Biedrins missed Mondays game because of flu-like symptoms, which meant Udoh got his first start of the year.And he didnt disappoint. At least at the offensive end. Udoh played 11 first-quarter minutes and had 10 points in that time.Biedrins has scored in double-figures just one time in an entire game this season, and that was the season-opener on Christmas when he scored 10 points against the Clippers.He was great, absolutely great, Jackson said. Offensively on the block, aggressive shooting the jumper, all over the place defensively, stepping up to the challenge defending Blake Griffin. He gave us a presence.

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