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 Заголовок сообщения: 8 World Cup. Anelkas sometimes nonchalant
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Los Angeles Clippers tightened their defence waiting for the offence to come around. The result was a second-half burst with a strong push from the reserves to lead Los Angeles to a 101-81 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday night. "I looked up at one point, and we were shooting like 28 per cent," Clippers forward Blake Griffin said. "Our defence was keeping us there, then we finally took the game over when we started hitting shots. Thats a good lesson for us." Reserves Darren Collison and Jamal Crawford scored 15 points each to lead the Clippers. Chris Paul also had 15 points and eight assists as Los Angeles snapped a two-game losing streak. Griffin added 14 points and nine rebounds, while DeAndre Jordan had 10 points and 14 boards. The performance was a reversal from the previous night when the Clippers lost 107-97 at Atlanta -- an effort coach Doc Rivers called "awful." Rivers credited Griffin and Jordan with stopping the Memphis frontline, particularly Zach Randolph, who was returning from missing two games after ingrown toenail surgery. "I thought those two guys fought hard down low," said Rivers, who recorded his 600th win. "I just thought their leadership defensively was why we won the game." Kosta Koufos led Memphis with 17 points, while Mike Conley had 16 on 6-for-8 shooting. Quincy Pondexter scored 15, and Randolph had 12 points and 12 rebounds, but made only four of his 13 shots. The Clippers shot 13 for 20 in the fourth quarter as Paul and Griffin sat on the bench, leaving the game to the backups. "The Clippers played real well defensively," Koufos said. "They established themselves early in the second half. They hit some tough shots." The Clippers trailed 42-40 at the break before outscoring Memphis 61-39 in the second half while shooting 56 per cent. Los Angeles reserves ended the night outscoring their Memphis counterparts 50-31. "That team has a lot of good players," Randolph said. "They have a lot of good bench players that could be starting." As is the case when the two get together, it was chippy from the start. After meeting in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs the last two years, a rivalry has developed. Early in third, Jerryd Bayless shoved Griffin for a flagrant 1. Then Randolph started mouthing with anyone in a Clippers uniform. And the lobbying for calls from both teams led official Danny Crawford to warn the coaches he had heard enough complaining. In the meantime, the Clippers turned up the defence, enabling them to click off a 21-7 run to open the quarter for a double-digit lead. "I thought the way we responded was good," Griffin said. "There are challenges mentally and physically, and I think that was a mental challenge for us. We were mentally tough in that situation." The rally helped the Clipper outscore Memphis 24-11 in the frame and carry a 64-53 lead into the final quarter. Los Angeles connected on 10 of its first 14 shots in the fourth, continuing to build the lead to as many as 24. Several Clippers players said the frustration from games like the one at Atlanta is they believe in their ability to play good defence. "It would be one thing if we knew were werent capable of it, and we didnt have the bodies and the people to execute it, but we do," Paul said. "We have myself, young, athletic guys that know what were capable of. I may not be athletic, but I am young." NOTES: The road team has won the last five games in the series. Memphis last regular season home win over the Clippers was April 9, 2012. ... Los Angeles now holds a 36-35 edge in the all-time series. ... Memphis G Tony Allen sat out with a bruised hip suffered in the Grizzlies victory over Phoenix on Monday. ... The Clippers are on a seven-game road trip that opened with a 107-97 loss at Atlanta on Wednesday. They have one other seven-game swing in mid-January. ... Counting the first-round playoff games the last two seasons, the Grizzlies and Clippers have played 22 times since Jan. 26, 2012. WEST BROMWICH, England -- Nicolas Anelkas latest stint in the Premier League could be over after only 83 minutes. The former France striker, who started in West Bromwich Albions opening day loss to Southampton last weekend, is pondering retirement following the death of his agent. After two disappointing seasons at Shanghai Shenhua and Juventus, the 34-year-old striker was hoping to get another chance in England, where he spent some of the best years of his career. But he told West Brom manager Steve Clarke that he wanted to quit football following the sudden death of Eric Manasse. After learning on Thursday that Manasse had passed away, the former Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Bolton and Chelsea player left training and was granted an indefinite compassionate leave. "Obviously Nicolas lost a close friend and an agent over the weekend, he died suddenly," Clarke said Friday. "I went in and had a very brief chat with him, and he wasnt in a good place. So the club have decided just to give him a bit of time to go away and think about it and get himself in a better place for the future." Clarke said Anelka told different members of the club that he wanted to retire but added that he asked the player to think twice about his decision. "Im not going to deny that he used that word in the conversations we had with him," Clarke said. "But weve given him time to go away and think about it and I dont think we could do any more in the circumstances as they were." Anelka, whose career has also been managed by his brother Claude, wrote on his Facebook page that he was feeling an "immense sorrow" following the death of Manasse. If Anelka decides to retire for good, it will mark tthe end of the career of one of the most talented and controversial players France has produced since former Manchester United great Eric Cantona.dddddddddddd After growing up in a Parisian suburb, Anelka started his career at Paris Saint-Germain and was quickly spotted by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who signed him in 1997. Known for his immense technical and athletic qualities, Anelka played a big part in the Gunners "double" win of the Premier League and the FA Cup that season but missed out on a place in the France team that won the 1998 World Cup. Anelkas sometimes nonchalant attitude and apparent lack of commitment to the team started to anger the Arsenal fans, who gave him the nickname "Le Sulk." Anelka then joined Real Madrid, where he won the Champions League, before moving to PSG, Liverpool, Man City, Fenerbahce and Bolton. The much-travelled Frenchman then struck up an electric partnership with Didier Drogba at Chelsea, winning the Premier League title and two FA Cups with the Blues. Anelka caused the biggest controversy of his career with the French national team, when he was sent home from the 2010 World Cup after insulting then-coach Raymond Domenech in the dressing room. His reputation reached its nadir, but the stubborn Anelka refused to apologize and ended his international career in the wake of the scandal with 14 goals in 69 appearances. Anelka recently agreed to a one-year deal with West Brom, with an option for a further season. "I think I will finish in England. Im happy here. I also hope that it will be with this club," Anelka said following his arrival. "Im 34 years old now and I want to enjoy my football. I hope everything will be perfect." 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