His teammates knew he was struggling with his shots, but at no time did Caron Butler lose his confidence.

In fact, Butler said he remained confident because his Clippers teammates and the coaching staff believed in him.

So when Butler made five of eight shots and scored 14 points on Friday it was a good sign for him and the team.

"I just think that as one of the leaders on the team, it's important to keep confident," Butler said. "You're not going to make shots all the time. But it's important for me to know that the confidence comes from top on down, in that the coaching staff believes in me and that if a shot is not going, I'm still their guy."

Butler said he talked to Chris Paul before the game, telling his All-Star point guard about different places to get him the ball, different places to put the small forward in offensive sets.

He scored eight points on the first quarter, missing just one of his four shots.

"After I got loose and warm, Chris and my teammates all made a conscious effort to get me involved and get me going," Butler said. "I just got everything flowing."