chris paul

Chris Paul scored eight of his 27 points in a dynamic overtime performance, and the Clippers moved to the verge of their second playoff series victory in 36 years with a 101-97 win over Memphis on Monday night, taking a 3-1 series lead.

The Clippers blew a 10-point lead late in regulation before finishing without Blake Griffin, who fouled out midway through overtime. It could have been another disaster for a franchise with more than its share, but Paul wouldn’t allow it…

Griffin had 30 points and seven assists before fouling out for the Clippers, who blew an 84-74 lead over the final 4 1/2 minutes before Paul took charge in extra time. He played with the same intensity he showed late in regulation, heedlessly flinging himself over the front row of chairs in an attempt to save a loose ball…

After Paul hit consecutive jumpers to put the Clippers ahead 99-93 with 44 seconds left, Mike Conley’s layup with 8.1 seconds left trimmed the Clippers’ lead back to two points. But after Mo Williams hit two free throws with 7.2 seconds left and Rudy Gay missed a meaningless 3-pointer, Griffin and Paul embraced while another frenzied sellout crowd of long-suffering Clippers fans roared…

Conley scored a career playoff-high 25 points and Gay had 23 on 8-of-25 shooting for the Grizzlies, who couldn’t match Paul’s late-game poise in another thrilling chapter of a highly entertaining series with four games decided by a total of 15 points…

Caron Butler, playing with a broken bone in his left hand, scored 14 points for the Clippers, who still can’t be comfortable after getting outrebounded 47-36 and giving away a big late lead.

– Reported by Greg Beacham of the Associated Press