The Los Angeles Clippers react after DeAndre Jordan's tip in with 4.3 seconds left on the clock was waived off because of basket interference. Getty Images

LOS ANGELES – When a basketball delicately dangles on the rim where it bounces is often a matter of luck. For two of the west's top teams, that balancing act can be the difference between winning and losing.

Unfortunately for the Los Angeles Clippers the ball teetered for too long – or DeAndre Jordan was just too impatient – either way the luckiest bounce of the game went in favor of the San Antonio as the Spurs stole game five in Los Angeles 111-107 to take a commanding 3-2 series lead.

"It was a very exciting game," said Spurs guard Manu Ginobli. "Both teams were tough and played well, but in the end, we got lucky."

With the Clippers down by one, 108-107 and 4.3 seconds on the clock, Jordan was called for basket interference after tapping in a Blake Griffin shot that may-or-may-not have gone in, negating what would have been the game-winning basket.

"I hit the ball," said a devastated Jordan after the game. "We did a good job fighting to put us in a situation to go up one game in the series. You can't blame anybody for that but me. I tipped the ball."

Tim Duncan led the Spurs with 21 points and 11 rebounds as San Antonio heads back to Texas looking to close the series out on Thursday.

"They're going to try and knock us on our heels and attack the basket however they can," said Duncan looking forward to game six. "We know the aggression they're going to come with, so we just have to be ready for that. We will be."

Tim Duncan
Tim Duncan #21 of the San Antonio Spurs controls the ball against Blake Griffin #32 of the Los Angeles Clippers during Game Five of the Western Conference quarterfinals of the 2015 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center on April 28, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The Spurs balanced attack saw six players in double figures, including three off the bench. Ginobli lead the second unit with 14 points, Patty Mills 13, and Boris Diaw chipped in 10 as the San Antonio bench outscored the Clippers 48 to 17.

"Patty was huge in the toughest moments, especially when we were down 12," said Ginobli of his benchmates. "Boris made two huge shots. Both guys were huge for us in tonight's win."

Griffin had 30 points, 14 rebounds and 7 assists to lead the Clippers, but he had a horrendous fourth quarter shooting 1-for-9 from the field and 0-for-2 from the free throw line. He also had five turnovers, including a controversial traveling violation at the end of the third quarter that in all reality should have been an "and one."

"Down the stretch everyone is tired, but it's not really an advantage or disadvantage for anybody," said Griffin as he tried to explain his poor play down the stretch.

Chris Paul had 19 had points and 10 assists for the Clippers.

The difference in the game came from beyond the arc where the Spurs were an impressive 11-for-23 and the Clippers were a pathetic 1-for-14.

"When you go 1 for 14 from the three and still score 107 points, that means you did a lot of good things," said Clippers head coach Doc Rivers. "I thought we got some really tough calls tonight, some brutal calls. We didn't make some shots, but those were big plays for us."

But in the end, the game hinged on that balancing ball on the rim and a whole lot of luck.

"On the last play, I thought it was going in," said Griffin. "I couldn't tell if D.J. [DeAndre Jordan] touched it or not. Obviously that was the call, but I don't know. I thought it was good."

After an official review, the play was not good and the basket was waved off forcing the Clippers to stave off elimination in a hostile environment in less than 48 hours.

"That was the play of the game," added Ginobli. "We got lucky. The ball was going in and he [Jordan] happened to touch it. That would have put us down one. Instead, it was a completely different ballgame. We got lucky on the play."

Game six will be in San Antonio on Thursday at 9:30PM EST.

Game Notes:
The San Antonio Spurs are 11-3 in best-of-seven series when its tied at 2-2. They are 13-1 when leading a series 3-2, with their only loss coming at the hands of a Ray Allen buzzer beater in game six of the 2013 NBA Finals against the Miami Heat.

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