Morris, Beal lead comeback
washington» Bradley Beal fell a point short of his career high Sunday.
He’ll have to settle for making a fan out of Chris Paul.
Beal scored 41 points — including 18 during the third quarter — in the Washington Wizards’ 117-110 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers. In the process, he left the nine-time all-star Paul thoroughly impressed.
“Brad looks like a totally different person,” said Paul, who scored 13 points and had 12 assists for the Clippers. “This is the Bradley Beal he should be all the time. Tonight he was aggressive. In order for this team to be as good as they probably want to be, he got to be like that.”
Markieff Morris had 12 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter, and John Wall added 18 points and 11 assists for the Wizards.
After going down by seven, Washington closed the game on a 22-8 run to seal their third straight win and fifth out of six.
The Wizards shot 80 percent (12-of-15) from the floor in the fourth, and on the other end held Blake Griffin scoreless after he had scored 26 in his first three periods.
“We wanted to make him shoot jump shots,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks said. “The ones he was making, in the second half he still made a few, but we still just wanted to stay with that strategy, and it paid off.”
DeAndre Jordan added 13 points and 17 rebounds Los Angeles, which played the final 1:08 without ejected coach Doc Rivers.
“This little stretch we’ve been winning games, but our defense still hasn’t been great,” Paul said. “You want to win and learn at the same time, and it finally caught up with us.”
Beal hit 6-of-10 3-pointers and shot 13-of-23 from the floor during a night when he repeatedly took the initiative to drive the lane.