Blake Griffin put up 37 points to lead the seemingly unstoppable Los Angeles Clippers to a 112-105 victory over the Phoenix Suns.
The victory - their eighth in a row - leaves the Clippers at 45-20, good enough for fourth place overall in the Western Conference, while the visiting Suns (36-27) sit in ninth, a half-game out of a playoff berth.
Griffin scored 22 points in the first quarter, a career-high for a single quarter.
The All-Star forward ended up hitting 14 of 16 from the field before fouling out with 3:23 left in Monday night's contest at the Staples Center, just over two minutes after Phoenix's P.J. Tucker was ejected for punching Griffin during a tussle.
Darren Collison, filling in for the injured Jamal Crawford, scored 20 points for the clippers and guard Chris Paul contributed 17 points and 11 assists.
The Suns' Goran Dragic scored 23 points to maintain his PPG average at 20.5, third-best among NBA guards.
Phoenix last made the playoffs in 2010 under coach Alvin Gentry, who is now Doc Rivers' assistant with the Clippers. EFE