Blake Griffin knows getting all the way back is ‘a trying process’

Clippers welcome Griffin back with 114-109 win over Wizards

Blake Griffin of the Clippers shoots over Washington’s Markieff Morris during Sunday’s 114-109 Clippers victory/AP photo by Mark J. Terrill


The Clippers’ Blake Griffin showed some frustration during Sunday’s 114-109 victory over the Washington Wizards at Staples Center. In his first game back after missing the previous 45, Griffin scored just six points on 2 of 7 shooting. He was obviously dismayed after some of the misses, but he seems to understand everything is not going to come back all at once.

“I was definitely frustrated with myself, even though I know I am not at 100 percent right now,” he said. “It is going to be a trying process, but I am definitely used to that.”

Griffin had not played since Dec. 25. He sustained a partially torn left quad tendon that night playing against the Lakers. It is still torn, but it’s good enough for him to play through the pain. He said Saturday it’s an injury that may have to be addressed in the off-season.

Griffin also had five rebounds and four assists Sunday in 24 1/2 minutes.

VIDEO: Chris Paul and Blake Griffin show fans what they’ve been missing with lob and dunk

Although Blake Griffin didn’t do much offensively Sunday in his first game back after missing the previous 45, there was one moment in the first quarter that reminded fans at Staples Center what they had been missing. It was Chris Paul sending up a lob to Griffin, who slammed it home for a 16-6 lead on the way to a 114-109 Clippers victory over the Washington Wizards. Check it out:

Five things to take from Clippers’ 114-109 victory over Wizards

The Clippers' Blake Griffin grabs a loose ball during Sunday;s win against the Washington Wizards at Staples Center. David Crane - Staff Photographer

Blake Griffin of the Clippers goes for a loose ball during the Clippers’ 114-109 victory over Washington on Sunday at Staples Center. It was Griffin’s first game back after missing the previous 45/Staff photo by David Crane

Blake Griffin returned after missing 45 games because of two injuries and a four-game suspension. He scored six points on 2 of 7 shooting in 24 1/2 minutes. He also grabbed five rebounds and doled out four assists and had a hard time handling a couple of passes. He was rusty, but that was to be expected. He at times became frustrated, which was also expected because he’s very hard on himself. He had a couple of fine moments, like when he caught a lob pass from Chris Paul in the first quarter and threw down a dunk. He had a behind-the-back pass to Paul in transition in the third quarter, the ball then ending up in the hands of J.J. Redick, who buried a corner 3-ball.

– One of the prettiest plays of the game came when Jamal Crawford hit DeAndre Jordan with a lob with 57.7 seconds left to play. Jordan was farther out than usual, so he had to throw down what can be best described as a long, monstrous dunk for a 110-104 lead. The two were talking about the play in the locker room afterward. They were stoked, to say the least.

– Nice game by Chris Paul. The point guard, who suddenly had Griffin back on the court with him, doled out 12 assists to go with his 27 points on 10 of 19 shooting. Griffin only made two baskets, and Paul had the assists of both of them. Paul scored 10 of his points during the all-important fourth quarter.

– Sixth-man Jamal Crawford is averaging 13.9 points on the season. But Crawford, 35, is averaging 18.0 points over the past five games. He scored 19 in this one on 6 of 12 shooting – 4 of 7 from 3-point range. Nine of those points came when they counted most, in the fourth quarter when the Clippers were holding off a Wizards team trying desperately to remain in the hunt for an Eastern Conference playoff berth. Crawford made 3 of 4 from the field in the quarter, all from 3-point range. He also had three of his six assists. It was terrific work for just over 25 minutes of play.

– The Wizards shot a respectful 45.7 percent from the field. But their guards – Bradley Beal and John Wall – combined to shoot 7 of 30 (23.3 percent). Beal shot 2 of 16, Wall 5 of 14. Some of that was good defense, some of it was just poor shooting. “We missed a lot of good looks, but we stuck with it,” Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. “I felt pretty good about the shots we missed, and I knew if we kept getting those shots in the second half that we could make a game of it.” Washington did just that, eventually pulling to as close as three points (110-107) with with 47.4 seconds to play after trailing by 12 (104-92) with 3:47 left.

BONUS TAKE: The Clippers (48-28) clinched homecourt advantage for the first round of the playoffs with this victory.

Blake Griffin struggles in Clippers’ win over Wizards, but he’s just stoked to be back out there

Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin, center, tries to pass the ball as Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal, left, and forward Jared Dudley defend during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 3, 2016, in Los Angeles. The Clippers won 114-109. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Blake Griffin of the Clippers looks to pass the ball as Bradley Beal, left, and Jared Dudley defend/AP photo by Mark J. Terrill


Blake Griffin didn’t play all that well Sunday in his first game back after missing the previous 45 because of two injuries, and a four-game suspension for fracturing his right hand on the face of team assistant equipment manager Matias Testi in January.

Griffin scored just six points on 2 of 7 shooting, grabbed five rebounds and doled out four assists in 24 1/2 minutes of the Clippers’ 114-109 victory over the visiting Washington Wizards.

Griffin knows he didn’t have one of his typical games, which would have been way too much to ask. He was just thrilled to be back after not having played since Christmas.

“It was just nice to be back out there,” Griffin said. “That’s really the main takeaway. I had a blast being out there. Rhythm was pretty bad, my conditioning was a little bit better than I thought it was going to be. But not great by any means.”

Griffin sustained a partially torn left quad tendon on Christmas against the Lakers and had not played since then. The tendon is still torn, but it’s good enough to play, even if there’s some pain involved.

He was asked how it felt post-game.

“I feel good right now,” he said. “But the key is tomorrow, the key is the next few days. That’s my biggest concern.”


Blake Griffin plays 11 minutes in 1st half, Clippers lead Wizards 60-49

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers


Blake Griffin played 11 minutes and two seconds in the first half Sunday against the visiting Washington Wizards. It was Griffin’s first action since Christmas, and he had missed the previous 45 games.

Griffin scored two points on 1 of 2 shooting, grabbed four rebounds and doled out two assists for the Clippers (47-28), who took a lead of 60-49 over the Wizards into the halftime break.

Chris Paul and J.J. Redick scored 13 points apiece in the half and Jamal Crawford scored eight off the bench.

Marcin Gortat led the Wizards (37-39) with 10 points and Nene scored eight.


Five things to take from Clippers’ 122-117 victory at Charlotte

Coach Doc Rivers and son Austin Rivers chat during the Clippers’ 122-117 victory Wednesday at Charlotte/AP photo by  Bob Leverone


– The Clippers, as they have recently, once again showed a lot of resolve even though they were missing leading scorer Blake Griffin, who has missed the past three games with a partially torn quad tendon. The Clippers have won four in a row overall.

– Another solid game by a the bench, which has not included the services of Josh Smith, who apparently remains in Doc Rivers’ doghouse; Smith has now not played in four of the past five games. Even Lance Stephenson played only two minutes in this one. Austin Rivers led the reserves with 22 points, Jamal Crawford scored 11, Cole Aldrich had seven points, three rebounds, two assists, two steals and two blocks; and Pablo Prigioni had five points – making both of his field-goal attempts – and four assists.

J.J. Redick scored a team-high 26 points and made 5 of 6 from 3-point range. Redick is now shooting a career-high 47.7 percent (73 of 153) from beyond the arc. Redick is third in the league behind Kawhi Leonard (48.8 percent) of San Antonio and Jared Dudley (48.3) of Washington.

– Another solid effort from 38-year-old Paul Pierce, who started and played 21 minutes. He scored 13 points. He shot 4 of 9, 3 of 7 from 3-point range. He also grabbed five rebounds, doled out two assists, made a steal and had a block.

– Speaking of 3-pointers, the Clippers shot 50 percent (15 of 30) from long-distance. After struggling in this area early on, the Clippers are now shooting 35.3 percent from 3-point range – tied with Portland for 13th in the league. A month ago, the Clippers’ percentage was 32.8.