The game started out the way a lot of them have this season for the Clippers, and that's with the team trailing early -- the Bulls outscored L.A. 14-8 in the game's first six and a half minutes.
And then, hope arrived.
Davis and Camby checked into the game together, and both were understandably a bit rusty. Baron had missed the team's previous 13 games, and Camby has been out the last five. Neither had the luxury of going through a full practice with the club, because with all of their injuries, the Clippers couldn't even field ten healthy players to run a five-on-five scrimmage. But Davis did his best to make an immediate impact nonetheless.
On Baron's first possession of the game, he drove the ball deep into the paint, and kicked it out to a wide open Ricky Davis, who buried a three-pointer. One possession, one assist: not bad. On the following trip back on defense, Baron grabbed a steal and led the fast break the other way, and dished to Eric Gordon who blew the layup, a play that should have been Baron's second assist in as many offensive possessions. But that was kind of how the night went for L.A.
The game plan against the Bulls was to push the tempo as much as possible, trying to score some easy transition baskets instead of playing a half court set against Chicago's supposedly stellar defense. A questionable strategy, considering these Bulls allow 103 points per game -- not exactly the Scott Skiles edition. The result was mostly quick, forced shots off of just a single pass, whether the Bulls got back on defense in time or not. As a team, the Clippers shot a dismal 36 percent from the field.
The Clippers were able to keep it close for a half however, trailing by just three at the break. But in the third quarter, L.A. managed to score only nine points, while the Bulls put up 26 -- and that was pretty much it.
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Baron Davis played 21 minutes, and made just one of his 10 shot attempts while dishing out four assists. Marcus Camby ended up playing 16 minutes, and finished with six points and six rebounds. Even though their presence couldn't help the Clippers get a win, it was a small step in getting the team back to full strength and being able to compete again. And that has to count for something.