Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers
Now that Blake Griffin is playing close to what he was before he suffered the first of two injuries on Dec. 25, it’s going to be even more difficult for the Portland Trail Blazers to hang in with the Clippers in their first-round playoff series.
Griffin on Sunday scored 19 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and doled out six assists in the Clippers’ 115-95 Game 1 victory over Portland.
Prior to tip-off Wednesday for Game 2, Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts was asked about trying to contain Griffin’s offense, which included some spectacular, high-rising dunks Sunday.
“We have to keep (Griffin) away from the basket,” Stotts said. “He had his best game since he came back from injury, and he looked like the player he was before he got hurt. It is challenging because he can pass and make plays off the dribble. I do not think there is any one way to defend him.”
Griffin missed 45 consecutive games with two injuries and a four-game suspension. He returned April 3 and played five regular-season games before the playoffs commenced.