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Chris Paul scored 20 points and passed off eight assists to lead the Los Angeles Clippers over the injury-hit New York Knicks 93-80 on Sunday in a matchup of contenders from opposite coasts.
Caron Butler contributed 14 points while Blake Griffin scored 12 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for the Clippers, who won for the seventh time in their past 10 games to reach 46-21 and stretch their Pacific division lead.
J.R. Smith scored a team-high 17 points despite shooting 4-for-20 from the field while Raymond Felton added 16 points and nine assists for the Knicks, who were lacking All-Stars Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler with knee injuries.
Anthony, who had fluid drained from his sore right knee earlier in the week, departed in the third quarter of a Wednesday loss to Denver Nuggets while Chandler suffered a bruised left knee Wednesday.
The Knicks suffered their fourth loss in a row and fell to 38-26, staying just ahead of Brooklyn atop the Atlantic division.