In the third quarter, Blake Griffin tried to shake off a shot to the face while his lungs burned from the strain.

He grabbed his shorts and didn’t move towards his team’s bench, as the rest of the Clippers gathered.

Chris Paul walked toward his teammate, wrapped his arms around his shoulders and pulled him towards the bench.

Sunday night, fittingly, it was Paul and Griffin dragging the Clippers to a 107-92 Game 1 win over the San Antonio Spurs.

“Thos are our stars,” Matt Barnes said.

Paul delivered on the all-around excellence fans of his are accustomed to, scoring 32 points to go with seven rebounds and six assists, and Griffin delivered four of the game’s most emphatic points on the way to 26, 12 and 6.

“They had it going,” Doc Rivers said. “And we noticed it and kind of rode it.”

With the game yet to be decided in the third quarter, Griffin hammered home two separate merciless slam dunks on the head of San Antonio reserve Aron Baynes, sending the Staples Center crowd into a state of euphoria.

And while the defending NBA champions fought back from a 20-point lead to get within single digits in the fourth quarter, Griffin and Paul were there again to answer, leading a 7-0 run that doused any sparks of a comeback.