The Los Angeles Clippers most likely have to win out and hope for some help along the way in order to claim a Pacific Division title.
Sitting 1 1/2 games behind the rival Lakers in both the division and conference standings, the fourth-seeded Clippers target their fourth straight win tonight against the top-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder at Staples Center.
The Clippers are coming off Saturday's 112-104 victory over the Golden State Warriors, as Chris Paul led the way with 28 points and 13 assists. Blake Griffin added 20 points and nine rebounds for the Clippers, who have won 11 of their last 13 games and improved to 22-9 at home this season.
"We came out aggressive," Paul said. "They started making threes but we did a good job of holding on at the end."
DeAndre Jordan scored 18 points, Mo Williams posted 14 off the bench and Randy Foye netted 12 points in the victory. Los Angeles will need all of its scorers on point tonight against a Thunder squad that can light up the scoreboard. The Clippers are also closing in on their first postseason appearance since 2005-06.
The Northwest Division-champion Thunder have won two in a row and four of five games since dropping three straight, and will try to move closer to locking down the No. 1 spot in the West.
Oklahoma City is just one game clear of San Antonio for conference supremacy with six games to play and recorded a 115-110 win at Minnesota on Saturday in the opener of a five-game road trip. Kevin Durant posted 20 points in the fourth quarter en route to a game-high 43 and Russell Westbrook notched 35 points and eight assists.
"We didn't play well, but give them credit," said Thunder head coach Scott Brooks about the Timberwolves. "They played well and they didn't back down, even with all their injuries."
Nick Collison was the only other scorer in double figures with 10 points, while Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins finished with 12 and 10 rebounds, respectively, for the Thunder.
OKC will also visit the Suns, Kings and Lakers on the trek, and is 22-9 away from home this season. The Thunder have lost two of three meetings with the Clippers this season and are winless in three straight games at the Clippers.