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Blake Griffin
Blake Griffin
Griffin playing for the Clippers
No. 23 – Detroit Pistons
Position Power forward
Personal information
Born March 16, 1989 (1989-03-16) (age 29)
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)
Listed weight 251 lbs (114 kg)
Career information
High school Oklahoma Christian
(Edmond, Oklahoma)
College Oklahoma (2007–2009)
NBA Draft 2009 / Round: 1 / Pick: 1st
Selected by the Los Angeles Clippers
Playing career 2010–present (9 years)
Career history
20092018 Los Angeles Clippers
2018–present Detroit Pistons
Career highlights and awards
NBA.com profile profile


Blake Austin Griffin (born March 16, 1989) is an American professional basketball power forward currently playing for the Detroit Pistons of the NBA. His elder brother is Taylor Griffin, the other NBA player.

He played college basketball for the Oklahoma Sooners. He was named the Associated Press, the John Wooden Award, the Naismith Award and the Sporting News player of the year for the 2008-2009 college basketball season.

When combined with Sam Bradford's Heisman Trophy, Oklahoma became the second school to have a top winner in both basketball and football in the same year (Gary Beban won the Heisman Trophy and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won the USBWA "Player of the Year" award in 1968 for UCLA).

Griffin has decided to leave college for a professional career and was, as projected by Sports Illustrated, the first pick in the 2009 NBA Draft held by the Los Angeles Clippers.

Biography

High school career

During his high school tenure he led Oklahoma Christian School (where his father was also his head coach) to four state championships.[1]

For the 2004–2005 season (his sophomore year), he was named to the "Little All-City All-State" team while averaging 13.6 points per game (PPG), and his brother, Taylor, was named "Player of the Year" by The Oklahoman.[2]

As a junior (2005–2006 season), he was named "Player of the Year" by The Oklahoman.[3] In 26 games Griffin averaged 21.7 PPG, 12.5 RPG, and 4.9 assists per game (APG), and blocked 49 shots with 45 steals. He was also named to the Tulsa World "Boys All-State First Team".[4][5]

During 2006–2007 (his senior season) he averaged 26.8 PPG, 15.1 RPG, and 4.9 APG. Griffin was named the Oklahoma "Player of the Year" by both the Tulsa World and The Oklahoman. Additionally, he was Gatorade's "Oklahoma Player of the Year" and named to the 2007 McDonald's All-American and Jordan All-American teams.[1][6] At the McDonald's All-American game in Louisville, Kentucky he won the slam dunk contest.[6]

College career

As a freshman (the 2007–2008 season) at Oklahoma, Griffin averaged 14.7 PPG and 9.1 RPG, and led the Sooners to a 23-12 record.[7]

Griffin was named to the Big 12 Conference "First Team" and also the "All Rookie First Team" (the last Sooner to make the conference "All-Rookie" team was Wayman Tisdale in 1983 for the Big Eight Conference).[8]

2008-2009 Season

Griffin finished the season with a Big 12 Conference record of 30 double-doubles,[9] which was one short of the NCAA record set by David Robinson with 31, set in 1986-1987. He also set a record for the most rebounds in Big 12 Conference history in a single-season, with 504,[9] and won the 2008-2009 MVP.

Blake Griffin OU

Griffin in pre-game warm-ups.

Record setting Valentines Day

During his sophomore season in a Valentines Day (February 14, 2009) home victory, 95-74, against the Texas Tech Red Raiders, Griffin would have one of his best career days to date: 40 points, including 8 of 10 from the free throw line and 16 of 22 from the field (for 72.7%), and 23 rebounds (7 offensive, 16 defensive), in 31 minutes. This marks the first time he has scored 40 or more points, and set career bests for both points and rebounds at OU.[7]

He set a school record with 30 double-doubles for a season by a Sooner (Garfield Heard, 27 games during the 1969–1970 season; and Alvan Adams 26 games during 1973–1974; each had 21).[10][11]

He also became only the third player in the history of the University of Oklahoma men's basketball program to score at least 40 points and get 20 rebounds in a game, after Wayman Tisdale (61 points - 22 rebounds against Texas-San Antonio in 1983) and Alvan Adams (43 points - 25 boards against Iowa State in 1975).[12]

Injuries

Griffin suffered a sprained Medial collateral ligament (MCL) in his left knee five minutes into the Sooners game against the Texas Longhorns, January 14, 2008. Griffin did not return to the game and the Sooners would go on to lose, 83-78.[13] He would also miss the following game, a 87-78 loss against the Kansas Jayhawks on January 19.[7]

Less than two months after injuring his left knee, he injured his right knee in a home victory (64–37) against Texas A&M. The injury this time was torn cartilage, and he had arthroscopic surgery, March 2, 2008. He missed the following game, a March 5 victory of in-state rival Oklahoma State, 68–56, at Stillwater.[14] But was back on the court a week after the injury (March 8) with 14 points and 8 rebounds in 28 minutes versus the Missouri Tigers, a 75–66 win for the Sooners on their home floor.[7]

Griffin received a concussion in a 68–73 loss to the Texas Longhorns in Austin, on February 21, 2009.[15] After a collision with Texas center Dexter Pittman, Griffin left the game with about 4 minutes to go in the first half and didn't return.[16] He sat on the bench with a bloody nose and apparently dazed from the impact.[17] It was the Sooners first loss of their conference schedule for the season.[16] After sitting out the next game, a 78–87 loss to Kansas (February 23), Griffin was cleared by the medical staff and returned a week later to get 20 points and 19 rebounds in a 78–63 victory over Texas Tech, February 28, 2009.[18]

NBA Draft

On April 7, 2009, Blake Griffin declared for the NBA Draft. A press conference announcing his decision was aired nationally on ESPNews. Chad Ford of ESPN rated Griffin as the No. 1 prospect for the 2009 NBA Draft.[19]

Los Angeles Clippers (2009–2018)

Draft year and injury (2009-10)

Griffin was taken as the first overall spot by the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2009 NBA Draft. He would be named the Summer League's MVP but in the final preseason game he injured himself landing from a dunk. A stress fracture in his left knee would bench Griffin for 7 weeks. Later it was found out that his knee was not healing correctly and Griffin opted to have surgery that would take him out the rest of the season.

Rookie Season (2010–11)

Griffin came back in the 2010-11 season and was still considered a rookie. He went on to break the Clippers franchise record for consecutive double-doubles ending at 27. He also broke the franchise record for most points by a rookie with 47 against the Indiana Pacers. Griffin was voted as a reserve in the 2011 All-Star game. The first rookie to do so since Yao Ming in 2003. During All Star weekend Griffin also won the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest against the Washington Wizards bigman JaVale McGee.

2011–12 season

Griffin was voted to play as a starter for the first time in the 2012 NBA All-Star Game along with new teammate Chris Paul. He was also selected to participate in the inaugural Rising Stars Challenge in which teams were a mix of the top rookies and sophomores. Griffin was selected first by Team Shaq.

2012–13 season

Before the 2012–13 NBA season, on July 10, 2012, Griffin signed a contract extension reportedly worth $95 million for 5 years. The deal will keep him under contract until the end of the 2017–18 season. He was also selected to compete for Team USA in the 2012 London Summer Olympics, but was removed after he injured his knee during a practice. Griffin was again voted by the fans as a starter for the 2013 NBA All-Star Game.

2013–14 season

He was voted as a starter in the 2014 NBA All-Star Game, making it his fourth consecutive All-Star appearance and third consecutive start. From January 20 to March 26, Griffin recorded 20+ points in a franchise-record 31 straight games. On April 2, 2014, Griffin and Chris Paul led the Los Angeles Clippers to a 112–108 win over the Phoenix Suns to clinch their second franchise division title. The next day, Griffin recorded his fourth career triple-double with 25 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists in a 107–113 loss to the Dallas Mavericks.

The Los Angeles Clippers finished with a franchise-best record of 57–25 and earned the third seed in the Western Conference playoffs. They would be matched up with the Golden State Warriors in the first round. On April 21, 2014, Griffin scored a playoff career-high 35 points in a win over Golden State. They would then lose to the Oklahoma City Thunder in the conference semi-finals.

2014–15 season

On February 8, 2015, he was ruled out for four to six weeks due to a staph infection in his right elbow. He returned to action on March 15 after missing 15 games to record 11 points and 11 rebounds in a 100–98 loss to the Houston Rockets.

On April 22, Griffin recorded his first career playoff triple-double with 29 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a first round game 2 series loss to the San Antonio Spurs. Four days later in Game 4, Griffin recorded a playoff career-high 19 rebounds and with 20 points helped the Clippers even the series at 2–2. In the series' Game 7 victory on May 2 that moved the Clippers into the second round, Griffin recorded his second career playoff triple-double with 24 points, 13 rebounds, and 10 assists. Two days later in Game 1 of the Clippers' semi-final match-up against the Houston Rockets, Griffin recorded 26 points, 14 rebounds and 13 assists for his second straight triple-double to lift the Clippers to a 117–101 victory. The Clippers ended up losing the series to the Rockets in seven games.

2015–16 season

On November 25, 2015, Griffin recorded season highs with 40 points and 12 rebounds in a loss to the Utah Jazz, with the Clippers dropping to 7–8 after starting the season 4–0. On December 26, he was ruled out indefinitely with a partially torn left quadriceps.

Griffin missed 45 games in total due to injury and suspension, returning to action for the Clippers on April 3 against the Washington Wizards with a home-court advantage of a 114–109 win.

2016–17 season

On November 5, 2016, Griffin scored a season-high 28 points in a 116–92 win over the San Antonio Spurs, helping the Clippers start the season 5–1. On November 11, he helped the Clippers improve to a franchise-best 8–1 with 25 points against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The following day, in a win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, Griffin joined an exclusive club with 9,000 career points, 4,000 rebounds and 1,500 assists. He became the fastest player to reach that plateau since Larry Bird. On December 19, 2016, he was ruled out until some point in January after requiring minor surgery on his right knee. He returned to action on January 24, 2017, scoring 12 points on 3-of-11 shooting in a 121–110 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. On February 6, in just his sixth game since minor knee surgery that had him sidelined for 20 games, Griffin recorded his fifth career triple-double, and first of the season, in three quarters, finishing with 26 points, 11 rebounds and a career-high-tying 11 assists in a 118–109 loss to the Toronto Raptors. Two days later, he scored a season-high 32 points in a 119–115 win over the New York Knicks. On February 26, 2017, he set a new season high with 43 points in a 124–121 overtime win over the Charlotte Hornets. On April 1 against the Los Angeles Lakers, Griffin reached 10,000 career points.

On April 22, 2017, Griffin was ruled out for the remainder of the 2017 NBA Playoffs with an injury to the plantar plate of his right big toe suffered during the Clippers' 111–106 win over the Utah Jazz in Game 3 of their Western Conference First Round Playoff series the night before.

2017–18 season

On July 19, 2017, Griffin re-signed with the Clippers to a five-year, $173 million contract. On November 22, 2017, he had 26 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a 116–103 win over the Atlanta Hawks, helping the Clippers snap a nine-game losing streak. Three days later, he made a 10-foot jumper with 3.2 seconds remaining and had a season-high 33 points to lead the Clippers to a 97–95 win over the Sacramento Kings. On November 28, 2017, he was ruled out for approximately two months after sustaining an MCL sprain against the Los Angeles Lakers the previous night. He returned to action early than expected on December 29 against the Lakers, scoring a game-high 24 points in a 121–106 win. On January 22, 2018, he had a triple-double with 32 points, 12 rebounds and a career-high 12 assists in a 126–118 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Griffin notched his seventh career regular-season triple-double, and second of the season. It was his third 30-point game of the season, and he was one point shy of his season high.

Detroit Pistons (2018–present)

On January 29, 2018, Griffin, along with Willie Reed and Brice Johnson, was traded to the Detroit Pistons in exchange for Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanović, a future protected first-round draft pick and a future second-round draft pick.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Chatmon, Brandon (April 8, 2007). "Player of the Year: Blake Griffin". The Oklahoman. 
  2. "The Roster". - The Oklahoman. - April 10, 2005.
  3. "The Roster". - The Oklahoman. - April 9, 2006.
  4. "Player of the year: Blake Griffin, Oklahoma Christian School - Griffin talking titles for his senior season". - The Oklahoman. - April 9, 2006.
  5. "Boys All-State First Team". - Tulsa World. - April 16, 2006.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Bailey, Eric (April 2, 2007). "Griffin Dunks To a Title". Tulsa World. http://www.tulsaworld.com/opinion/article.aspx?articleID=070328_2_B1_hOUsi78382. Retrieved 2007-04-09. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 "Blake Griffin". Rivals.com and STATS LLC - (c/o Yahoo.com). http://rivals.yahoo.com/ncaa/basketball/players/72931. Retrieved 2009-02-15. 
  8. Wright, Scott (March 11, 2008). "OU, OSU BASKETBALL: ALL-BIG 12 SELECTIONS - Griffin All-Big 12- Sooner standout also selected on all-freshman team". The Oklahoman. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Blake Griffin Wins Oscar Robertson Trophy As USBWA Player of the Year". - Big 12 Conference. - Big12Sports.com. - March 30, 2009
  10. Helsley, John (February 15, 2009). "Blake Griffin has 40 points, 23 boards for No. 2 Sooners against Texas Tech". The Oklahoman. 
  11. "Capel's Sooners Still Streaking". Oklahoma Sports / SoonerSports.com (CBS Interactive). http://soonersports.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/021309aab.html. Retrieved 2009-02-15. 
  12. Latzke, Jeff (February 14, 2009). "Blake Griffin has 40 points, 23 boards for No. 2 Sooners against Texas Tech". Associated Press - (c/o The Oklahoman). 
  13. Wright, Scott, and John Rohde (January 15, 2008). "Griffin Leaves with Knee Injury". The Oklahoman. 
  14. Rohde, John (March 6, 2008). "Sooners Minus Blake Silence Their Critics". The Oklahoman. 
  15. "Griffin hit in face, leaves game with concussion". - Associated Press. - February 21, 2009.
  16. 16.0 16.1 Helsley, John. - "OU loses Blake Griffin, game". - The Oklahoman. - February 22, 2009.
  17. Vertuno, Jim. - "Abrams’ 23 points leads Texas past No. 2 Oklahoma". - Associated Press. - February 22, 2009.
  18. Helsley, John. - "OU men's basketball: Blake Griffin back; Sooners, too". - The Oklahoman. - February 28, 2009.
  19. Ford, Chad. "2009 NBA Draft Prospects: Top 100". ESPN. http://insider.espn.go.com/nbadraft/draft/tracker/rank?draftyear=2009&action=login&appRedirect=http%3a%2f%2finsider.espn.go.com%2fnbadraft%2fdraft%2ftracker%2frank%3fdraftyear%3d2009. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 

External links