CLEVELAND >> J.J. Redick scored 23 points, Blake Griffin matched a career high with 11 assists and the Los Angeles Clippers bounced back from a brutal loss with a 113-94 victory on Thursday night over the Cleveland Cavaliers, who have lost two straight for the first time as defending NBA champions.
Chris Paul scored 16 and DeAndre Jordan had 15 rebounds for the Clippers, who blew an 18-point lead and fell in double overtime at Brooklyn on Tuesday.
Los Angeles took control with a 13-2 run to open the third quarter.
Kyrie Irving scored 28 and LeBron James 16 for the Cavs, who were outplayed for the second game in a row. Cleveland lost at Milwaukee on Tuesday, when coach Tyronn Lue pulled his starters in the second half and J.R. Smith wandered off the floor during play and gave up an easy basket.
This wasn’t much better as Lue pulled James, Irving, Smith, Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson with seven minutes left as it became very clear there would be no comeback as the Cavs are in their first true slump since winning the title in June.
Cleveland failed to make 10 3-pointers for the first time this season, ending its league record to start a season at 16 games.
The Clippers outscored the Cavs 27-15 in the third, when James and Co. showed frustration and briefly lost their focus.
Irving and Thompson argued on the floor during a timeout, and James was later called for a technical when he pushed the Clippers’ Alan Anderson to the floor while being fouled on a layup.
The Clippers took advantage of Cleveland’s sloppiness at the start of the third quarter and scored eight quick points before Paul’s 3-pointer gave them a 71-52 lead.
The Cavs committed two turnovers in the first 46 seconds of the period, prompting Lue to call a timeout. He called another one a few minutes later as the Cavs were beaten for two easy dunks by Jordan.
Redick made two 3-pointers in the final 51 seconds of the second quarter as the Clippers closed a choppy first half with a 7-2 spurt to open a 58-50 lead.
Clippers: Coach Doc Rivers was fined $15,000 by the NBA for his outburst in Tuesday’s loss. He was assessed two technicals and ejected by referee Ken Mauer. “Not shocked at all,” Rivers said of the penalty given “for verbally abusing a game official and failing to leaving the court in a timely manner after his ejection.” Rivers added, “It was low, so I’m good with it.” … Redick has made a 3-pointer in 76 straight games, the longest active streak in the league.
Cavaliers: Cleveland dropped to 9-2 at home. … James moved past Bob Cousy (6,955) for 16th place on the career assists list. … G/F Mike Dunleavy was a late scratch because of a concussion. Dunleavy was hit in the head during Tuesday’s loss at Milwaukee, but didn’t begin showing symptoms until Thursday, according to a team spokesman. … F/C Channing Frye returned after missing three games following his father’s death.
Clippers: At New Orleans on Friday to conclude a six-game road trip.
Cavaliers: At Chicago on Friday to begin a three-game trip. James will face former Miami teammate Dwyane Wade for the first time since he signed with the Bulls. James has to wear a Cubs uniform to the game after losing a bet on the World Series to Wade.