martell webster

The Los Angeles Clippers were missing Blake Griffin and Chris Paul. The Washington Wizards won the game.

Tread carefully around Randy Wittman when trying to connect those two thoughts.

”Hey, listen, we played enough games this year without players,” the Wizards coach said. ”Don’t give me the (bull) about who was here and who wasn’t here. … You guys would have printed it a wholly different other way if we had lost. … Now you’re going to print, ‘Ah, you won because Blake didn’t play.’ Give me a break.”

To be fair, the outburst was more playful than angry, but the point is well-taken. The Wizards will happily take Monday night’s 98-90 win - or any victory for that matter - in a season that was essentially wrecked from the get-go in part because of injuries to John Wall and Nene.

Now it’s the Clippers who are close to falling off the rails, having lost seven of nine - including six of eight without Paul. Los Angeles is 1-3 halfway through an eight-game road trip and has fallen 4 1/2 games off the Western Conference lead…

Martell Webster scored 21 points, Nene and Garrett Temple had 15 points apiece, Emeka Okafor grabbed 14 rebounds, and Wall had 13 points and eight assists for the Wizards, who broke a four-game losing streak and moved a game ahead of the league-worst Charlotte Bobcats.

DeAndre Jordan had a career-high 22 rebounds for the Clippers. Eric Bledsoe, going toe-to-toe with Wall in a duel between former Kentucky teammates, had 17 points and nine assists.

– Reported by Joseph White of the Associated Press