The Los Angeles Clippers will try to put an ugly loss behind them Wednesday night when they welcome the Philadelphia 76ers to the Staples Center.
The Clippers lost, on the road, to the Sacramento Kings, 116-101 on Tuesday night. L.A. built a five-point lead after three quarters, then got creamed in the final frame, 38-18.
"The level of intensity at this time of year has to be higher and I don't feel like our level of intensity for 48 minutes is high enough right now," said head coach Vinny Del Negro. "It's up to the guys. They've got to want it more than anybody else."
It's getting down to the wire on the 2012-13 season. The Clippers are tied for the third seed with the Memphis Grizzlies, but the teams are just a half-game ahead of the surging Denver Nuggets.
Against the Kings, Blake Griffin led all scorers with 26 points. Jamal Crawford scored 25 off the bench, Caron Butler had 13 and Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan and Matt Barnes each had 11.
Paul also had 15 assists, but committed seven turnovers and shot 2-for-10 from the field.
The Sixers begin a four-game western trip with the Clippers and have been playing better of late. They've won two in a row, three out of four and the only loss during that stretch was a 98-94 setback to the scorching hot Miami Heat.
On Monday, the Sixers withstood a late rally from the Portland Trail Blazers to win 101-100.
"It's nice to finally win a game like this," head coach Doug Collins said. "I told our guys I thought we had a tremendous week.
All-Star Jrue Holiday led the way with 27 points and six assists. Spencer Hawes continued his great run with 18 points and 13 rebounds. Thaddeus Young added 19 and Damien Wilkins netted 12.
During the game, the Sixers announced that Andrew Bynum will undergo arthroscopic surgery on both knees and will miss the remainder of the season.
"After many months of rehabilitation and consulting with numerous doctors, Andrew and the doctors treating him determined that this is the best course of action at this point," Sixers general manager Tony DiLeo said. "We will continue to monitor and evaluate his status moving forward."
Bynum did not play a second for the Sixers all season after Philly shipped Andre Iguodala, Moe Harkless and Nikola Vucevic away to acquire the All-Star Bynum.
The Clippers have won two straight over the Sixers, but Philly has won three of its last four on the road in this series. The Sixers, though, are mired in a 13-game road losing streak and haven't won away from home since New Year's Day at the Staples Center, against the Lakers.
Philly's 13-game road slide is the longest during a season since a 20-game drought back in 1987-88.