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All Blake Griffin does is, well, everything
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 23, 2013 @ 5:00 am In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Sean Highkin, USA TODAY Sports
It was Chris Paul’s late-game heroics that sealed a 93-91 Monday win for the Los Angeles Clippers over the Memphis Grizzlies, but it is impossible to overestimate the impact Blake Griffin had. One of the downsides to being the highlight factory he has become is that Griffin has developed a reputation as a one-dimensional dunker. The “all he does is dunk” line of thinking is something he even poked fun at in one of his Kia commercials, because it’s grossly unfair to the stellar all-around game he’s developed.
Griffin’s full range of low-post moves were on display Monday as he outworked Zach Randolph—never a matchup to be taken lightly—at both ends. He knocked down a few midrange shots as well, something he’s developed more consistently over the course of his three seasons. He was hitting from pretty much everywhere, on his way to 21 points on 9-of-18 shooting.
Griffin also dished out four assists Monday, highlighting another strength. He’s grown into one of the best-passing big men in the league, up there with an opponent in this series, Marc Gasol.
Griffin scored 13 of his 21 points in the first quarter to lead to a tie despite Memphis playing a much better team game than they did in their series-opening loss on Saturday. Not bad for a guy who only dunks. But boy, does he ever dunk.
Conley steps up: Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley has become one of the best floor generals in the NBA at both ends of the floor. On Monday, he scored a playoff career high of 28 points to go along with his nine assists. If there was a silver lining to be had in Memphis’ loss, that was it.
Clip show: Griffin didn’t create the only highlights for the Clippers. Jamal Crawford had 15 points off the bench, including an insanely difficult (and career-defining) off-balance fallaway jumper.
Eric Bledsoe had an impressive chasedown block.
And, of course, there was that Chris Paul game-winner, which really couldn’t have been defended any better by Tony Allen.
Kevin Love was impressed.
Noah guts it out: Joakim Noah is still playing on one foot, but … [For more on Playoff Putbacks: All Blake Griffin does is, well, everything, click here.]
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