Blake Griffin, Dream Center to host annual Back to School bash on Saturday

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


Blake Griffin and the Dream Center on Saturday at 10 a.m. will play host to the annual Back to School Bash.

The event will benefit families from impoverished areas making under $15,000 annually. The areas include Echo Park, the Rampart District, Skid Row, Lincoln Heights, South Central L.A. and Watts.

Among the items to be distributed are 2,000 back packs, each filled with school supplies. Families can also receive free dental checkups, health screenings, haircuts, clothes and groceries.

Some of the fun stuff will include face painting, water and “slime” games, jumpers, a petting zoo and a science fair.

The Dream Center is a volunteer organization established in 1994. It is located at 2301 Bellvue Ave., Los Angeles, 90026.


Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, Blake Griffin to attend Team USA mini-camp

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


USA Basketball on Thursday announced that Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan will be among 34 players to participate in the Team USA mini-camp Aug. 11-13 in Las Vegas.

The roster is expected to include all 12 members of the 2014 gold-medal winning World Cup team as well as nine Olympic gold-medal winners – eight from the 2012 London Games team.

Paul won Olympic gold medals with Team USA in the 2008 Beijing Games as well as in London. Griffin was originally part of the 2012 team, but was forced to withdraw because of injury.

Head coach is Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski.

The mini-camp will feature practices on Aug. 11 and Aug. 12 and will culminate with a showcase game between Blue and White teams Aug. 13 at Thomas & Mack Center.

Chris Paul named to All-NBA second team, Griffin and Jordan to third

Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo by Los Angeles Clippers,


Point guard Chris Paul on Thursday was named to the All-NBA second team and forward Blake Griffin and center DeAndre Jordan were named to the third team.

It’s the first time in franchise history three Clippers have made All-NBA in the same season and it’s the first time since 2004-05 when Phoenix did it that a team landed three players on the respective teams.

This is the second time Paul has been named to the second team; he made the first team the previous three seasons. Paul averaged 19.1 points and a league-high 10.2 assists. He made the All-Star team for the eighth consecutive season.

Griffin led the Clippers in scoring with a 21.9 scoring average during the regular season; he averaged a career-low 7.6 rebounds, but a career-high in assists at 5.3 per game. Griffin had been named to the second team the previous three seasons and this is his first time on the third team. He made his fifth All-Star game appearance in succession.

Jordan averaged a league-best 15.0 rebounds as well as 11.5 points and 2.2 blocks. This is his first selection to an All-NBA team.


Blake Griffin doesn’t think much of the so-called ‘Clippers Curse’

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers,


Not long after the Clippers were eliminated by the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference semifinals when the Rockets won Game 7 on Sunday in Houston, Blake Griffin was asked about the so-called “Clippers Curse.” The question seemed to center on the team never having gotten past the conference semifinals in franchise history, more than anything else.

Griffin seemed less-than-thrilled with the question, but he responded.

“The ‘Clippers Curse’ when I first got here was No. 1 picks getting hurt and not working out, their draft picks not working out and them not making the playoffs, them not having winning seasons,” he said. “No one talked about getting past the second round, not a single soul talked about that. But now, that’s what everyone talks about. Just like the last one, we’re going to bust through this one.”

Magic Johnson says Clippers’ loss to Rockets will haunt them forever

Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson/Associated Press file photo by Reed Saxon


Magic Johnson helped play host to a Los Angeles news conference Monday to announce the intention to build a 22,000-seat stadium that would house the expansion Los Angeles Football Club that will play in the MLS. Johnson is one of several in the ownership group.

During his time with reporters, Johnson was asked about the Clippers falling in seven games to the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference semifinals. Never shy to speak his mind, Johnson said quite a bit.

“Well, I was disappointed because Chris Paul is my good friend, Doc Rivers is a good friend and I want them to win and get the monkey off their backs,” Johnson said.

He then talked about Game 6, when the Clippers blew a 19-point lead late in the third quarter. Not only did they lose that one 119-107 at home at  Staples Center, they missed their best chance to close out the series and advance to the conference finals for the first time in franchise history. The Clippers lost Game 7 by a 113-100 count Sunday in Houston.

“I thought they missed the opportunity in Game 6,” Johnson said. “You gotta close out at home. You can’t allow it to go to a Game 7. If you think about all the Lakers heydays, when we had closeout games and we had them in the Forum or Staples Center with Kobe (Bryant) and Shaq (O’Neal) or with my Showtime Lakers, we closed out. So when you have your opportunity, you gotta close out.

“I remember when we didn’t, in terms of we had the Celtics in seven games and we lost there, that will haunt us forever and this loss will haunt the Clippers forever because they had their opportunity up 20 in the third quarter. You gotta win that game in the Staples Center. So we’ll see what happens.”

Johnson intimated he’s hopeful the Clippers can get over the hump.

“I wish them well because I want so bad for Chris Paul to have his opportunity to play in the championship,” he said. “I want that for him. He’s meant a lot to the league, but also to the fans here in Los Angeles because this is a Lakers town, but we like Chris Paul. We do. We love the way he plays, his leadership.

Blake (Griffin) has really grown. You saw him grow up this season and really do some wonderful things. But at the same time, it’s going to be tough for them to swallow this.”