CHICAGO — Chris Paul liked the way the Los Angeles Clippers grinded out an ugly win when they were challenged.
Blake Griffin had 22 points and 10 rebounds to help Los Angeles beat the Chicago Bulls 94-89 on Tuesday night for its seventh straight victory, the team’s longest winning streak in two decades.
Marco Belinelli hit a 3-pointer with less than a minute left to cut Chicago’s deficit to 89-87, but Paul answered with a floater in the lane, then iced it with three free throws down the stretch as Los Angeles snapped the Bulls’ season-high three-game winning streak.
Paul finished with 18 points and four assists, below the 20 and 10 he averaged in his first dozen games against Chicago but enough for the Clippers to sweep the season series for the first time since 2009-10.
“I kind of forgot what it was like to play in the fourth quarter," said Paul, who hadn’t seen late action since Dec. 3 at Utah. “But at the end, we knew we were on the road and we’d have to withstand a run we knew they would make. Our defense kept us in the game."
Chicago shot 50 percent from beyond the arc, but only one of six in the fourth quarter.
“We want our identity to be a defensive identity," Paul said. “We’re still trying to build that."
The Clippers (15-6) are on their longest winning streak since an eight-game run during the 1991-92 season. They have won 10 of 12 at the United Center.
Carlos Boozer scored 24 points and pulled down 13 rebounds for the Bulls, who had won five of six overall.
It was Boozer’s 10th double-double in 13 games, but he missed a pair of free throws and was called for an offensive foul during a crucial sequence 3 minutes into the fourth quarter as Chicago failed to cut into the Clippers’ lead.
The Bulls (11-9) had held opponents below 90 points in seven of their last nine games, though they did keep the Clippers under 100 for the first time during their seven-game run.
Griffin was a force inside throughout, quieting the home crowd with his thunderous dunks.
In other games on Tuesday:
NEW YORK — Carmelo Anthony scored a season-high 45 points, Jason Kidd made the tiebreaking 3-pointer with 24 seconds left, and New York rallied from an early 17-point hole to beat Brooklyn.
CLEVELAND — Kyrie Irving scored 28 points in his return after missing 11 games with a broken finger, helping Cleveland drop the Lakers to a new low in a tumultuous season.
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Ty Lawson had 26 points, seven assists and five rebounds, and Corey Brewer added 15 points to lead Denver over Detroit.
NEW ORLEANS — Jordan Crawford scored 26 points to help Washington spoil the return of overall No. 1 pick Anthony Davis with a win over New Orleans.