Instant Amazing: Blake Griffin soars in loss to Knicks
Stellar, overpowering ... it's hard to describe what Blake Griffin did against the Knicks on Saturday night without gushing and sounding too over the top after the Clippers lost for the 13th time in 14 games this season.
NBA.com's Scott-Howard Cooper just tweeted that Ralph Lawler said that Griffin had one of the two best games in LA Clippers history. Lawler is in his 32nd year as the voice of the Clippers. The other game he was referring to was Elton Brand's monster game at Charlotte on Dec. 23, 2005, when he had 38 points, 20 rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots.
Griffin came within three assists of a triple-double, finishing with 44 points, 15 rebounds and seven assists. He set the franchise rookie record for points in a game. The previous mark was held by Eric Gordon, who scored 41 against Oklahoma City in the 2008-09 season.
The raves, rightly so, were coming in within minutes after his air show and dazzling array of dunks.
"With him being so athletic like that, any time you can get him attacking the basket, it's going to be success for him," said injured center Chris Kaman. "It could have easily been 50. He did his typical rebounding night. A lot of those dunks were just exceptional. You don't see stuff like that.
"You are going to see more of that. That's just who he is and how he plays. He even passed the ball well -- seven assists. I was impressed with that."
Once Griffin finished with his TV interview, I asked him, not-so-jokingly, if 50 points was next.
"A win is next," Griffin said. "We've got to get a win. All that means nothing if you don't come out with a win."
Griffin spoke about the spectacular dunk where he appeared to climb over the Knicks' Timofey Mozgov, saying: “Randy (Foye) just passed to me at the right time. I think he helped me get up a little bit, once I got on top of him. I don’t know. I just tried to throw it in. I couldn’t get to the rim.”
But he was critical of himself.
“Defensively, I didn’t do too well,” Griffin said. “We can’t let Amare (Stoudemire) get 39 and (Danilo) Gallinari get 31. We’ve just got to keep working. We’re playing hard. . . . Just making sure I stay aggressive, not forcing anything and let it come to me and play with a little better pace.”
He was his typical understated self and talked about things opening up. Uh, just a little bit.
The dunk over Mozgov, Griffin-ologists, was not the first of that kind. Griffin provided a helpful reminder of a similar slam a little more than a year ago.
"Probably last preseason when we played the Lakers, I think I had a dunk that was kind of like that," said Griffin, of when he posterized DJ Mbenga. "I just kind of threw it in."
Photo: Clippers power forward Blake Griffin begins to elevate over the Knicks' Timofey Mozgov before throwing down a dunk from a couple feet away. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press