Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/29/12
LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Clippers took the lead with less than six minutes left and sealed the game at the free-throw line to defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves 101-95 on Wednesday night at Staples Center. Chris Paul made all four of his free throws in the last 12 seconds to help the Clippers break a four-game losing streak. Paul finished with a game-high 23 points and 11 assists. Blake Griffin added 18 points and DeAndre Jordan had 15 for the Clippers, who welcomed back veteran guard Chauncey Billups from a torn Achilles tendon. Billups had seven points in 19-plus minutes in his first game action in more than nine months. Kevin Love had 19 points to lead five Timberwolves in double-figures, but he shot just 3-for-12 from the field and 1-for-5 from 3-point range. Love added 12 rebounds, and Nikola Pekovic had 11 points and 10 rebounds for Minnesota, which led 77-76 going into the fourth quarter. Los Angeles atoned for being outrebounded 52-35 by forcing 18 Minnesota turnovers and holding the Timberwolves to 37.8 percent free-throw shooting. The Clippers bench, which had struggled lately, had 36 points to boost the effort, with Matt Barnes and Jamal Crawford combining for 24 points. The Clippers came back from as much as nine down in the first-half to take a 57-55 lead into the break despite being outrebounded 23-16. Paul had 11 first-half points on 5-for-7 shooting and added six assists. Griffin and Jordan each contributed eight points before the break. Love led Minnesota with nine points in the first two quarters. Pekovic and Malcolm Lee each added eight in the first half. Both teams got major bench scoring early, as the Clippers' reserves outscored the Timberwolves' 23-21 prior to halftime. NOTES: Billups averaged 15 points, four assists and 2.5 rebounds in his 20 games for the Clippers last season before tearing his left Achilles tendon on Feb. 6 at Orlando. ... The Timberwolves won the season series 3-1 last season, with the wins accounting for more than 10 percent of their season win total (26). Los Angeles won the teams' final matchup last season on April 12, 95-82. ... Caron Butler's two points came two days after he set Clippers records for 3-pointers made in a game (nine), half (seven) and quarter (six) in a 33-point outburst during Los Angeles' 105-98 loss to the New Orleans Hornets.
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