PHOENIX (AP) -- The Los Angeles Clippers
turned playground bully in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals. Elton Brand
& Co. pushed the smaller Phoenix Suns
around all night Wednesday, dominating the boards 57-26 in a 122-97 rout that evened the best-of-seven series.
Game 3 is in Los Angeles on Friday night.
"We're little and you have to fight," Phoenix coach Mike D'Antoni said, "and if you don't have the fight in you, big guys are going to punish you -- and they did."
Brand, coming off a 40-point performance in Game 1, had 27 points and 10 rebounds as all five Clippers starters scored in double figures. Cuttino Mobley
, held to three points on 1-for-6 shooting in Game 1, scored 23 points, as did Sam Cassell
, the Clippers' 36-year-old point guard. Chris Kaman
added 14 points and 16 rebounds and Quentin Ross scored 11 points.
"We feel good about going home," Brand said. "They didn't do what they had to do on their court, now we shift it to our home court advantage."
It was the second most one-sided home playoff loss in Suns' history, eclipsed only by their 129-90 first-round rout by Utah in 1991.
Phoenix also lost at home in Game 2 of the first-round series against the Los Angeles Lakers
, then had to rally from a 3-1 deficit to win the series. The Suns had won four straight playoff games going into Wednesday night. Raja Bell
, who opened the game 0-for-5, led the Suns with 20 points, while Leandro Barbosa
added 19 and Tim Thomas
15. Steve Nash had 14 points and eight assists, then sat out the final 5:44.