Blake Griffin To Make Return Soon
Blake Griffin will return to the Clippers sooner than expected. The Clippers’ power forward has been cleared by the medical staff and will immediately begin serving a four-game suspension for punching their assistant equipment manager, the team announced Sunday. Expect Blake Griffin to return to the lineup on April 3rd, in a game against the Washington Wizards. In his 30 games this season, Griffin is averaging 23.2 points, 8.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 34.9 minutes
Griffin last played on Dec. 25, missing 41 games up to this point. He originally sat out due to a partially torn left quad, but also fractured his right hand when he punched Testi in the face. The interaction was the result of a verbal altercation in Toronto on Jan. 23. The team suspended him four games for the incident and will withhold his game check for a fifth game. Griffin returned to practice yesterday.
In Blake Griffin’s absence, Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan and J.J. Redick have all stepped up their games. The Clippers are 27-14 in Blake’s absence. Griffin’s return should result in Luc Richard Mbah a Moute dropping out of the starting lineup, while the likes of Cole Aldrich, Wesley Johnson, and Jeff Green could all see their minutes trend downward. Currently, the Clippers sit at the 4th spot in the Western Conference.
The Golden State Warriors swept the Clippers 4-0 in their head to head match-ups this season and are heavy favorites against the Clippers. However, Blake Griffin will return healthy and rested. The Clippers could change their game and focus on Griffin scoring buckets in the low post, something they haven’t been able to do in his absence. With Blake Griffin back, the Clippers would be wise to use the last remaining games of the season to have him ready for a first round match-up against the Memphis Grizzlies.