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Leonard, George stellar in returns as Clippers thump Magic

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Leonard, George stellar in returns as Clippers thump Magic

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Outlandish how appealing Kawhi Leonard and Paul George might be in their first games attend following five-day layoffs, the Los Angeles Clippers didn’t must wait prolonged for solutions Friday night.

The significant individual forwards combined for 35 first-quarter points and each delivered thunderous dunks over Orlando gamers later in the first half in the Clippers’ 116-90 victory over the Magic.

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George had 26 points, nine rebounds and five assists, and Leonard added 24 points after they missed two games as a consequence of of NBA contact tracing protocols.

George attacked the rim and soared excessive over center Nikola Vucevic for a dynamic dunk in the first quarter. Leonard beat Aaron Gordon off the dribble in the 2nd length and jammed to bring his teammates on the nearby bench to their toes in the 2nd quarter.

Clearly, each superstars bask in been attend for a Clippers team that beat Orlando for a 14th consecutive time — a winning disappear that dates to Nov. 6, 2013.

“Every … it was a tie. We each a vast one,” George acknowledged when asked which dunk was greater between him and Leonard. “I’m factual going on the rim with force, using my athleticism until my athleticism is long past. I’ve soundless received a shrimp left in the tank.”

Leonard and George each played 28 minutes and bask in been rested early in the fourth quarter after the lead ballooned to as powerful as 27 points. Leonard made 8 of 15 shots, had a buzzer-beating 3-pointer on the finish of the first half and passed to Reggie Jackson for one other buzzer-beater on the finish of the third quarter. George made 10 of 19 shots and 3 of 9 3-pointers.

The Clippers bask in been a plus-27 with George on the flooring and a plus-23 with Leonard.

“I was neatly-organized relieved that we bask in been each healthy, initially,” George acknowledged. “We had been playing so neatly that it was sad that we needed to win the hiatus, but safety is first.”

Serge Ibaka added 13 points and nine rebounds for a Clippers team that’s 13-2 this season when leading at halftime.

Orlando scored the first 11 points of the 2nd half to rep within three, but the Clippers outscored the Magic 28-11 the remainder of the third length to win a 90-71 edge into the final length.

“On a night where guys bask in been a shrimp tired, factual having their presence was gigantic and that was mountainous for us,” Clippers coach Ty Lue acknowledged of the firepower provided by George and Leonard following Orlando’s transient third-length hasten. “They bask in been factual making plays for each person else and making the game easy.”

As soon as 6-2, Orlando lost for a 10th time in the past 12 games. The Magic’s frustrations showed in the third length when Vucevic and coach Steve Clifford bask in been hit with technical fouls factual seconds aside for arguing with referee Aaron Smith over a non-call.

Terrence Ross led the Magic with 24 points off the bench. Vucevic, Orlando’s most fixed participant all season, finished with factual 10 after hitting simplest four of 13 shots. Orlando shot 36 percent from the flooring.

“(The Clippers) are terrific they usually played neatly,” Clifford support. “Their superstars are two of the, no subject, 8-to-10 simplest gamers in the league they usually played savor it. That makes it exhausting.”

TIP INS

Clippers: The initiate was moved to eight p.m. by the NBA to permit for beyond regular time for gamers’ COVID-19 assessments to be finalized and evaluated. The NBA has already needed to set aside off 22 games to this point — 21 of them coming since Jan. 10. … Patrick Beverley missed his third straight game with a sore knee.

Magic: Vucevic has presumably set aside himself in dwelling to be an All-Star again by drastically improving his 3-point shooting. After making factual seven 3s in his first five NBA seasons, Vucevic has step by step made extra 3-pointers each of the past five years. He came into Friday having hit 52 of 117 3s — easily the most among NBA services and products. … Michael Carter-Williams, who hoped to play Friday, re-injured his sprained left foot in practice Thursday.

UP NEXT

Clippers: At Recent York on Sunday.

Magic: Vs. Toronto in Tampa on Sunday night.

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Leonard, George stellar in returns as Clippers thump Magic