Mavericks hand Clippers worst loss in franchise history behind an NBA-record 50-point first-half margin

Cassandra Negley
·Writer

In “not a typo” news, the Los Angeles Clippers had a historically rough time against the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday. They fell behind, 77-27, by halftime for an NBA record they’d rather not have set.

Yes. The half. And it didn’t get better. The Clippers lost their first game of the season by a 124-73 score, the worst loss in franchise history. The 50-point halftime deficit is the largest in an NBA game during the shot-clock era that started in 1954-55, per ESPN Stats and Info.

The previous record was a 47-point lead by the Golden State Warriors over the Sacramento Kings on Nov. 2, 1991.

It was so bad they Mavericks could have gone scoreless in the second half and still won by four points. The Clippers’ only other 50-point loss was on Dec. 2, 1988, against the Seattle Supersonics.

For the Mavericks, it was the second-largest win in franchise history, trailing a 53-point trouncing of the Philadelphia 76ers in November 2014, per ESPN Stats and Info.

Kawhi Leonard on the bench.
Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard could only watch as his team fell behind by 50 at the half. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)

Clippers fall behind in ugly 77-27 halftime score

The Clippers (2-1) were without Kawhi Leonard after teammate Serge Ibaka inadvertently elbowed him in the teeth during the fourth quarter of a 121-108 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Christmas Day. It required eight stitches.

The Mavericks (1-2) got 10 players into the game in the first half, all of whom had a plus-minus of at least +20. Luka Doncic had 18 points, seven rebounds, four assists and one block at the half. By the final whistle, he neared a triple-double with 24 points, nine rebounds and eight assists in 26 minutes.

Josh Richardson had 21 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. had 18. The Mavericks bench scored 49 points and had 32 of the 54 rebounds. Their 10 steals were five times as many as the Clippers.

Paul George had a Clippers-best 15 points and four assists. Ibaka had 13 points and nine rebounds. Ivica Zubac had 10 points off the bench.

Twitter reacts to Clippers collapse

Metta World Peace, the former Ron Artest who is now formally known as Metta Sandiford-Artest, had some advice for the Clippers.

And even more advice.

Of course, even on a day full of NFL games with playoff implications, jokes were plentiful on Twitter.

By the end of the third quarter, the Clippers had cut into the lead and trailed by only ... 47. The fourth quarter reverted the small lead back.

At least Clippers fans didn’t have to watch the travesty in person.

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