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CLIPPERS STILL CAN’T WIN ON LAKERS’ HOME FLOOR

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The Los Angeles Clippers have two goals this season: making the playoffs and beating the Los Angeles Lakers at the Forum.

After Tuesday night's 111-103 defeat, it's none down and two to go.The Clippers lost their 24th consecutive game on the Lakers' home floor, including 16 straight since moving from San Diego to Los Angeles in 1984. Their last victory at the Forum was eight years ago, eight days after Pat Riley became the Lakers' coach.

"I'm glad we denied them this time, but it's going to be tough the next time," the Lakers' Michael Cooper said. "Even if we have to play them in Nome, Alaska, they're going to give us all we can handle for the rest of the year."

Magic Johnson scored nine of his season-high 34 points in the last four minutes to preserve the Lakers' streak. Ron Harper had 26 points and Ken Norman 22 for the Clippers.

"They came out and played extremely well and aggressive," said Cooper, who scored 10 points in the final period. "I think Ron Harper's made the difference. He's a veteran and he's given them that offensive rhythm. So, we had our work cut out for us."

The Lakers led 56-43 at halftime, but lost guard Byron Scott for the second half after he fell on his left wrist early in the game. They shot 25 percent from the field in the third period while the Clippers outscored the Lakers 30-15.

The Clippers led by four points midway through the fourth period, but Cooper hit two 3-point shots in a 67-second span - the first giving Los Angeles a 86-85 edge, the second tying the game 89-89 with 4:55 left. Cooper and Johnson then both hit two free throws before Charles Smith's three-point play with 2:12 remaining narrowed the gap to 95-94.

That was as close as the Clippers got. Johnson followed with a 3-point play and added a layup 27 seconds later for a 100-96 lead with 1:32 left. A.C. Green then had six free throws in the last 35 seconds.