Clippers’ Griffin signs five-year deal
The Clippers announced a five-year deal with All-Star forward Blake Griffin, who took a break from Olympic team preparation to sign his contract.
Griffin, the No. 1 overall pick in 2009, agreed to a five-year, $95 million contract extension with an early termination option after three seasons. He was added to the Olympic roster over the weekend because of injuries.
“Happy to officially sign my extension to #clippernation for 5 more years. Can’t wait. Thanks for all the support,” Griffin tweeted late Tuesday.
Griffin is the first member of the ’09 draft class to sign an extension. Every team is permitted one player who can sign a five-year maximum contract extension to his rookie contract per the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Players eligible must be voted to start in two All-Star games, named All-NBA twice or named MVP.
Griffin limped through the season-ending playoff loss to the Spurs with a knee injury but said he’s 100 percent entering the London games.
The 23-year-old power forward is an explosive leaper whose highlight reel dunks have stretched his appeal well beyond Los Angeles does room for improvement. He shot 54.9 percent from the field in 2011-12 and averaged 20.7 points and 10.9 rebounds, benefiting from the addition of point guard Chris Paul.
But Griffin’s range is modest and he’s prone to foul trouble, two areas in which, if he shows sizable gains, coach Vinny Del Negro said could help the All-Star reach the next level.
He’ll be better served getting there if the Clippers can also retain Paul, one of the top potential free agents next summer
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