Leonard, George each score 31, Clippers tie series with Jazz

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kawhi Leonard and Paul George know it takes the two of them to make things go right if the Los Angeles Clippers are going to advance beyond the second round of the NBA playoffs for the first time. Both responded again on Monday night.

Leonard and George each scored 31 points Monday night to propel the Clippers to a 118-104 victory over the Utah Jazz and even their Western Conference second-round series at two games apiece.

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“Myself and Kawhi got full trust in each other,” said George, who was playing in his 100th career postseason game. “It’s opportunities for us to score when we get switches, but then there’s opportunities to allow our teammates to be aggressive and make plays for them when we can attack our mismatches. I think it’s just a healthy mix.”

Leonard and George also became fifth duo since the merger with 30 points each in back-to-back playoff games.

“These guys understand that we need them to be the head of the snake and be super aggressive,” said Marcus Morris Sr., who had 24 points and was 5 of 6 on 3-pointers. “Those guys are our leaders. We go as they go and they understand that. Guys have just been picking up the slack behind them.”

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In a game that Los Angeles dominated all night, Leonard provided the highlight with his dunk late in the first half. He got the ball just beyond the 3-point line, drove past Royce O’Neale in the lane and then slammed it over Derrick Favors to give the Clippers a 62-38 lead with 1:24 remaining in the second quarter.

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