Feb. 15 (UPI) — Veteran guard Lou Williams stepped up from his typical role off the bench and scored a game-high 30 points to lead the shorthanded Los Angeles Clippers to a win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Williams made 10 of 22 shots from the field and also had 10 assists in the 128-111 victory on Sunday at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The Clippers played without All-Stars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, who missed the game due to injuries.
“We are just trying to play the right way,” Williams told reporters. “We kind of got going in the second quarter. We had a lot of momentum going into the third quarter.”
Williams — a three-time Sixth Man of the Year award winner — made his first start of the season on Sunday.
The Cavaliers took a 7-2 lead to start the game. Williams and fellow Clippers guard Patrick Beverley then led an 11-2 run to give their team a 13-9 advantage. The Clippers never lost that lead.
Williams scored nine points in the first 12 minutes to help the Clippers earn a 32-24 first-quarter lead. Marcus Morris Sr. chipped in 10 points in the second quarter and the Clippers led 70-58 at halftime.
Williams scored another 10 points in the third frame and the Clippers led by as many as 28 points down the stretch to secure the victory.
Morris scored 23 points and had six rebounds in the win. Serge Ibaka scored 21 points and had nine rebounds for the Clippers. Beverley scored 16 points in the win.
Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton scored 22 points in the loss. Darius Garland and Cedi Osman scored 20 points apiece for the Cavaliers. Jarrett Allen had 15 points and 10 rebounds in the loss.
“We just continue to build good habits, move the basketball, play the right way and play with pace. Our guys did that” Clippers coach Tyronn Lue told reporters.
“Lou Williams was special. He created a lot of opportunities for us to score the basketball.”
The Cavaliers (10-18) face the Golden State Warriors at 10 p.m. EST on Monday at Chase Center in San Francisco. The Clippers (20-8) host the Miami Heat at 10 p.m. EST on Monday at Staples Center.