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Clippers score biggest comeback win in franchise history

Kyrie Irving, Garrett Temple

The L.A. Clippers were supposed to take a step back after the trade deadline and probably wanted to. Their primary justification for trading Tobias Harris to the Philadelphia 76ers wasn’t missing the playoffs, but doing so would indeed be helpful given the team’s imminent pursuit of Anthony Davis this summer.

Los Angeles’ first-round pick is lottery-protected; if the team makes the playoffs, the pick will go to the Boston Celtics. Needless to say, the Clippers need all the assets they can get to convince the New Orleans Pelicans to trade their stranded superstar.

But on Saturday night, Los Angeles was far less worried about draft positioning than it was beating Boston at T.D. Garden, which is especially impressive considering how the game began. After falling behind 68-40 with four minutes and 39 seconds in the second quarter, the Clippers stormed back in the second half for a 123-112 victory, earning the biggest comeback victory in franchise history in the process.

At the post-game podium, Doc Rivers readily admitted to believing the game was over at halftime, planning to use the game’s remaining 24 minutes to assess his team’s new additions, Landry Shamet and Ivica Zubac.

“Coming out of the game at halftime, we’re taking notes for the next game,” Rivers said, per The Athletic’s Jovan Buha. “That’s how far we were out of it. And the first thing we said is, ‘Zubac can really play.’ And, ‘Shamet’s going to be huge for us.’ And then in the second half, they both went out and played well.”

Zubac, starting at center, had 12 points and nine rebounds in 23 minutes. Shamet, meanwhile, scored 13 of his 17 points off the bench in the second half.