NBA: Clippers end skid, enter playoffs after OT win over Utah

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Apr 11 2019 03:07 PM

LA Clippers forward Montrezl Harrell (5 and Utah Jazz center Tony Bradley (13) compete for a loose ball in the first half at Staples Center. Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

The first-round playoff opponent for the Los Angeles Clippers was inked about the time they tipped off against the visiting Utah Jazz on Wednesday night.

The Jazz would have to wait a little longer.

In the meantime, there was a regular-season finale to play between two teams locked into their respective playoff spots, and Los Angeles and Utah needed overtime before the Clippers won 143-137 to end a three-game losing streak.

Montrezl Harrell scored 24 points to lead the Clippers. Ivica Zubac added 22 points and 11 rebounds and Lou Williams scored 15 off the bench.

Utah rookie Grayson Allen scored a career-high 40 points and Georges Niang scored a career-best 24 off the bench.

The Clippers had a chance to play for seventh if the Oklahoma City Thunder had lost to the Milwaukee Bucks, or the San Antonio Spurs had lost to the Dallas Mavericks, both on Wednesday.

The Thunder didn't face much opposition from the Bucks, who had already clinched the top seed in the East and rested most of their top players in the 127-116 loss, clinching the No. 6 seed for Oklahoma City.

About the same time, the Spurs were locking up the No. 7 seed with a comfortable 105-94 win against the lottery-bound Mavericks.

As the No. 8 seed, the Clippers will face the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors in the first round.

The Jazz were locked into the No. 5 seed in the West coming into Wednesday. They'll take on the Houston Rockets in the first round.

Utah played without its top three scorers, Donovan Mitchell (thoracic spasm), Rudy Gobert (left ankle soreness) and Rickey Rubio (left quad contusion), and six of its top nine.

All should be ready for the playoffs.

Utah scored the first five points of the second half to take its first lead since 5-2, but the Clippers were able to move back ahead 102-97 entering the fourth and maintained a lead until just over a minute remained in regulation.

Zubac made back-to-back baskets to give the Clippers a 132-128 lead in overtime and Los Angeles continued to pull away.

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.