Basketball - High-flying Clippers pacify toothless Bulls

The Los Angeles Clippers have continued their impressive opening to the NBA season, matching their best start to a year in franchise history by thumping the Chicago Bulls 101-80 at Staples Center.


Saturday’s victory was the fifth straight for the Clippers, who were led by big man Blake Griffin's double-double and Jamal Crawford's prolific shooting to improve to 7-2.

Griffin scored a game high 26 points and added 10 rebounds while Crawford chimed in with 22 points of his own as the home side dominated.

"It's about my team-mates, it's about how they space the floor and are giving me the confidence throughout the game," Griffin told reporters.

"It was a very important win."

Having played eight of their opening nine games at home the Clippers must now prove their worth on the road as they head for a tough four-game run in five days, including contests against the San Antonio Spurs (8-2) and Oklahoma City Thunder (7-3).

The only other time in franchise history the Clippers won seven of their opening nine games was 2005-06 where they finished 47-35 on the year, and ended up one victory short of the Western Conference Finals.

"Yeah, we're thrilled. But it's early," head coach Vinny Del Negro said.

"We're happy but we let a couple of games slip away.

"Against some of the top teams I felt we played solid basketball at times but we have to be more consistent.

"It's early on and guys are still getting their feet under them a little bit.

"We have a tough road trip coming up and we have to handle it right. We'll see where we are after that; it will be a good test for us."

The Bulls, still playing without injured former league MVP Derrick Rose, trailed for the majority of the night and dropped to 5-4 on the season.

Carlos Boozer was the pick of the Bulls line-up with 22 points and 12 assists.

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