Tag Archives: Blake Griffin

Clippers Practice For Fans At USC

LOS ANGELES, CA– A week before the 2015-2016 NBA regular season begins, the L.A. Clippers treated their fans to a rare open to the public practice at The Galen Center on the campus of USC in downtown Los Angeles. The crowd draped in assorted Clippers attire watched as All-Star Blake Griffin & co. put on a show. These types of fan appreciation events have come with the arrival of Head Coach and President Doc Rivers.

“These things are good,” said Rivers. Anytime the fans get to see the players outside of their norm, which means on the floor playing, they get closer. Fans are who make us, and I try to get my players to understand that.”

The Clippers have had a busy pre-season, which included a trip to China to twice play the Charlotte Hornets. Although the practice was more exhibition than execution, Rivers still used it as an opportunity to address mistakes made in the game before, a 130-95 victory over the Golden State Warriors.

Run The Triangle

Clippers Assistant Coach Sam Cassell works with Blake Griffin before the Clippers open practice at the USC Galen Center.

Children led “Let’s go Clippers” chants as DeAndre Jordan finished three-man-weaves with ferocious dunks, and Jamal Crawford dazzled with his trademark playground one-on-one play. Blake Griffin swished in a couple of corner three-pointers, something opposing defenses hopes he leaves in the Trojan’s arena.

The night was special for Rivers who has successfully carved out Clippers visibility from within the Hollywood sized purple-and-gold shadow of the Los Angeles Lakers.

“I walk down the street now and I see a Clipper jersey there, and there, and another there,” said Rivers. “I tell you it’s great. It is great being a Clipper.”

Jordan Clarkson has that bounce in his game

Doc Rivers sent them boys at him.

After winning Western Conference Rookie of the Month, Chris Paul and the Los Angeles Clippers held upstart Jordan Clarkson to 2 points in a 106-78 shellacking over the Los Angeles Lakers.

He had been the talk of the town, scoring 30 points against Russell Westbrook while putting together a string of impressive games against elite Western Conference point-guards. The Clippers were well aware of it. Paul, an MVP candidate, led the reality check against Clarkson, and the ‘Watts Towers ‘ duo of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan provided solid interior help-defense.

Clarkson was officially welcomed into relevancy  by getting schemed against on defense. 

What followed was a humiliating defeat for the Lakers which included a deficit of 43 points. Head Coach Byron Scott said he wouldn’t want to be in a foxhole with some of the players who didn’t seem interested in competing. But how would Jordan Clarkson respond to having a bad game following his award-winning month?

Scott’s message resonated with the team,  and although the Lakes were again defeated by the Clips 105-100, they displayed more interest in not being completely humiliated. Clarkson finished with 20 points in 3 quarters and made adjustments to the attention he will now receive on defense. Instead of hanging his head in the face of a superior opponent, Clarkson accepted the challenge of knowing that he will be on the opposition’s radar screen. 

 Greatness is measured in part by how a player responds to adversity. Jordan Clarkson proved he has the mental toughness to accompany his gifted physical abilities.

 

Clippers Blake Griffin named Western Conference Player Of The Week

The National Basketball Association today announced that Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin has been named Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, Nov. 24, through Sunday, Nov. 30. It marks the fifth time Griffin has achieved this honor in his career. LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers was the Eastern Conference winner.

Griffin helped the Clippers to a 4-0 week behind averages of 23.8 points (fourth in the Western Conference), 9.8 rebounds (seventh in the conference) and 5.0 assists. He posted at least 22 points in three of the four games played during the week. All four wins came on the road and helped cap off a franchise-best 6-1 road trip.

On Nov. 24 against Charlotte, the All-Star forward fell one assist shy of a triple-double, having finished with 22 points, 16 rebounds and nine assists in a 113-92 win. On Nov. 28, Griffin collected 30 points and 10 rebounds in a 102-85 win in Houston against the Rockets. Griffin is the only player in the NBA this season averaging at least 22 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Jeff Teague, Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Dallas’ Tyson Chandler, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul, Memphis’ Marc Gasol, Miami’s Chris Bosh and Portland’s Wesley Matthews.

Clippers hold 26th Annual “Teamwork At The Table” Event

As they have for over two decades, the Los Angeles Clippers provided local families in need with food, clothing and books at the team’s 26th annual Thanksgiving event, “Teamwork at the Table” today at the St. Joseph Center in Venice, CA.

Clippers players Blake Griffin, Matt Barnes, Jordan Farmar, Reggie Bullock, Chris Douglas-Roberts and CJ Wilcox distributed Thanksgiving turkeys and food baskets. In addition to food items, the Clippers provided clothing and books to pre-selected families in need.

For the eighth year, local supermarket chains Ralphs and Food 4 Less teamed up with the Clippers to donate food and turkeys. The Clippers players were joined by members of the U.S. Air Force as part of the NBA Cares Hoops for Troops Program. The Clippers and the NBA have joined together with the Department of Defense on the new “Commitment to Service” initiative built upon four pillars: Leadership, Transition, Community and Health.

St. Joseph Center is a non-profit social service agency that helps over 6,500 individuals annually. The Center’s mission is to provide working poor families, as well as homeless men, women and children of all ages with the inner resources and tools to become productive, stable and self-supporting members of the community.

Ralphs  and  Food  4  Less  believe  in  being  good  corporate citizens by contributing  to  the  diverse  communities  they  serve. Ralphs and Food 4 Less focus on health, education, the fight against hunger, the advancement of women and minorities, and the development of youth.

Clippers have team meeting, but Doc Rivers isn’t impressed

The Clippers held a players-only meeting after suffering a 121-104 defeat to the Golden State Warriors. Clippers guard Jamal Crawford said in practice today that the meeting of the minds was beneficial.

“It helped guys clear the air,” said Crawford. “I think the main point was just to get on the same page, everybody needs to be playing on the same page. The important thing is we understand that you have to go through the process.”

But Head Coach Doc Rivers doesn’t believe in such group sessions.

“I’m not fan of team meetings,” admitted Rivers. “When I hear about some team having a team meeting I’m like I want to play those guys.”

The Way They Were

The Clippers may have many of the same players that got them to the Western Conference semifinals, but Rivers contends this isn’t the same team.

“We deal with people, not X’s and O’s,” he explained. “The names might be the same, but this isn’t the same team I had last year.”

No Rest Down The Stretch

When asked if he would mirror San Antonio Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich’s style of resting his star players during certain parts of the season, Doc Rivers said he’d been there and done that.

“If you remember we did that in Boston in 2012,” recalled Rivers. “I used the last month of the season to have a second training-camp. We had two and a half hour practices, and we sacrificed a lot games down the stretch because of it.”

The Celtics had home-court advantage on the line in the final game of the season against the Atlanta Hawks who they were to face in the first-round. Rivers rested his starters and ceded home-court to the Hawks. The move proved to be brilliant in the end with the rested aging Celtics winning the series 4-2.

“We played Atlanta the last game of the season and could have had home-court advantage, but we rested our starters and said just let them have it,” added Rivers. It was a gamble but it paid off in the end. I obviously won’t be able to do that with this team.”

 

Vita Coco Named the ‘Official Coconut Water of the Los Angeles Clippers’

After watching LeBron James cramp up in Game 1 of the 2014 NBA Finals, many teams are paying closer attention to their players forms  of hydration.

That may explain why the Los Angeles Clippers have forged an innovative partnership which makes Vita Coco the Official Coconut Water of the Clippers organization.

“We’re proud to partner with The Los Angeles Clippers, the NBA’s most exciting franchise, on our first-ever pro team relationship”, says Jeff Rubenstein, Vita Coco’s Senior Vice President of Marketing.  “Los Angeles is one of Vita Coco’s fastest growing markets, and the Clippers provide a meaningful platform to educate basketball fans on Vita Coco’s natural hydration benefits while strengthening the brand’s increasing connection to the Los Angeles community.”

Vita Coco participated in the Clippers Feed the Community event in South Los Angeles on October 25. Head coach Doc Rivers and the entire Clippers roster distributed Vita Coco, non-perishable food, personal care items, school uniforms and shoes to 1,600 South Los Angeles families at the Salvation Army Siemon Family Youth & Community Center. Vita Coco will continue to play a role in select Clippers community initiatives throughout the 2014-15 season.

About Vita Coco:

Vita Coco is the country’s best-selling coconut water brand, sold at over 100,000 retailers nationwide, including Kroger, Safeway, Albertson’s, Walmart, Target, Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, 7-Eleven, Circle K, Whole Foods Market, Sprouts, Costco, Amazon,com and hundreds of airports, universities and other food service locations. For more information about Vita Coco visit www.vitacoco.com.

Blake Griffin A Goon On Halloween In Clippers Win Over Lakers

Just when Los Angles Lakers fans thought it was safe to come out and play, Blake Griffin turned Staples Center into Camp Crystal Lake as his Clippers team drew first blood 118-111.

Griffin, now dawning a beard, had 39 points, seven rebounds, and four assists. He was 11-12 from the free-throw line, but it was his work on the low-post that was most impressive. Once classified as a player in the mold of Shawn Kemp who could only dunk over people, Griffin is now displaying the ability to score on the post with either hand. He is also knocking down his free-throws as to avoid ‘Hack-a-Blake’ treatment.

Chris Paul went a quiet 2-9 for 12 points. The Clippers would not have been able to win games before with that type of production from him. But now Griffin is slowly becoming the engine that powers this team. Although it’s become a guard driven league, scoring point guards who dominate the ball do not historically win you championships- ambidextrous big men who can score with their backs to the basket do.

As Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul continue to be the veteran elder statesmen, Blake Griffin is doing his part to establish a new pecking order in Los Angeles. He and DeAndre Jordan, also known as the ‘Watts Towers’ will make it a match-up nightmare every-night on Figueroa street.





Lakers And Wesley Johnson Will Wing It

Wesley Johnson was a model of consistency for the 2014 Los Angeles Lakers playing in 79 games, 62 as a starter.

He averaged a career-high 9.1 points on 42.5% from the field, including 36.9% from three-point range.

This season Johnson will return to his natural position at small-forward after spending much of last season playing the the four spot.

“It was crazy. I was guarding Blake and banging with Z-Bo. That ain’t me,” said Johnson.

“He ain’t playing power forward anymore,” confirmed Lakers Coach Byron Scott.

Johnson will be the Lakers primary wing defender, and will be called upon to slow down a conference ripe with athletic shooting-guards.

“He’s athletic, long, quick, fast, jumps out of the gym and can shoot the basketball,” said Scott.

“He has everything that he needs to be a very good player in this league,” Scott added. “It’s just a matter of me pulling it all out of him. I think this year he’s going to surprise some people and have a good year.”

“I’m more confident in myself than I have been since I got into the league,” Johnson said. “Basically, I know what to expect. I’m playing for Byron. I worked out with Kobe this summer, and that really just boosted my confidence. It got me back to basics and to what got me here.”