LOS ANGELES -- All of it -- the game, the series, the season, everything -- was practically over.
Down 16 with 9:19 left to play, the Clippers' season was essentially on its last legs.
"It's an obvious thing, but 3-1 compared to 2-2 is a huge, huge difference," Blake Griffin said.
And his team was certainly staring 3-1 in the face.
But despite being down 22 in the first quarter and 16 in the fourth, the Clippers, somehow, revived their season, stealing Game 4 from the Thunder with a 101-99 win.
It was the Clippers' biggest comeback this year.
Using a pint-sized lineup with Chris Paul, Darren Collison, Jamal Crawford, Danny Granger and Blake Griffin, the Clippers erased the Thunder's 16-point fourth-quarter lead, completely altering the complexion of the series.
"We just kept fighting," Griffin said.
Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, the stars of the previous two Oklahoma City wins, were sensational again, threatening to turn Game 4 into a boring blowout.
Oklahoma City stormed to a 29-7 lead, silencing the home crowd. And while the Clippers were able to push back to get within four in the first half, the Thunder pulled away time and time again.
"I think we got attacked," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said of the Thunder start. "I think they smelled blood in the water. They jumped on us. ... Then, we started pressing."
The Clippers made a quick run early in the second half, but could never really get close. It took for the team to be down 16 in the final period for things to change.
"You're talking about really having our backs against the wall, pressure, the season's over. This is everything," Glen Davis said of his team's mentality. "And we came through."
Going small with an unlikely group ("I'm not sure we ever used that lineup," Rivers said), the Clippers started to create havoc.
Paul, matched up against the NBA's Most Valuable Player, Durant, and gave up almost 12 inches in height differential. But with Paul leading a trapping defense, Durant turned the ball over three times.
Collison attacked relentlessly on both ends, hounding Westbrook up and down the court while sprinting at the rim for a team-high 12 fourth-quarter points.
Griffin, playing the final 8:44 with five fouls, scored 10 points and anchored the undersized defense.
And Crawford, who has been openly mocked for defense throughout his career, swiped two steals, while also draining a 3 that gave the Clippers their first lead of the game hours after it started.
"It's still surreal," Crawford said. "Did that really happen? Being down that many points and coming back to win that game?"
While the Clippers needed almost every one of the 38 points they scored in the fourth quarter, the team sealed the game defensively.
The Clippers held the Thunder, which had been operating without much resistance the previous 10 quarters, to 42 second-half points.
It's also the first time the Clippers held an opponent below 100 points since Game 3 in the first round, with the team finally getting the stops they needed down the stretch.
"We really had no choice," Rivers said. "We were down. We had to score and get stops."
If they hadn't, the Clippers would've been trying to become just the third team in NBA history to come back from a 3-1 deficit with Game 5 on the road.
But they made sure that wasn't their ending.
"The whole time I'm thinking 'We can't be down 3-1. We can't be down 3-1,'" Collison said. "For us, it was just battling; continue to fight (toward) tying the series up."
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