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Clipper Injuries - Blake's Balky Knee

The gorilla in the room for the Clippers is always injuries.  This summer, after LA won the lottery, every writer's angle was how the Clippers history with first overall picks was terrible: Michael Olowokandi and Danny Manning.  But the simple fact is, Manning was the absolutely correct pick - he just happened to blow out his ACL early in his rookie season.  So while everyone knew that Blake Griffin would never ever be a Kandi-style bust, one can never be sure about injuries, and certainly less so when you're dealing with the Clippers, so a Manning-like catastrophe hangs over the head of Clips Nation like the sword of Damacles.

So while it would be silly to make too much of a little swelling in a knee, one understands if Clipper fans get a little nervous.  The prize rookie has now been injured, however minorly, three times - at the end of Summer League, just before training camp, and at the end of pre-season - and the regular season hasn't even started yet. Clipper fans have simply learned to expect the worst.

When Griffin went diving over the scorer's table and later crashing to the floor in his very first pre-season game, I had the immediate thought that he might need to adjust his style a bit to avoid being constantly banged up in an 82 game season.  Former Clipper Corey Maggette comes to mind as an example of a guy who misses 15 or 20 games a season at least, simply by playing a certain style and suffering the injuries that go with it.  But it's a whole different concern when BG tweaks a knee simply because he jumped really high and then landed.  Let's face it, we like the fact that he jumps high, and we want him to do a lot of it.  Getting injured in the process can only be considered a bad thing.

But before we all jump to the worst-case scenario conclusions, let's remember that at this time last season we had similar concerns about Eric Gordon.  In fact, if anything the 'injury-prone' case was easier to make with EJ.  He'd missed games his freshman season at Indiana, and had also played hurt, which affected his game.  Then he got hurt in Summer League.  Then he got hurt in training camp.  But all he did was lead the team in total minutes played while appearing in 78 games.  So let's not get too worked up about an injury that is classified as day-to-day before the season has already started.  Might he miss a couple of games?  Sure, he might.  And then again he might not.  In either case, over the course of an 82 game season, it's not a problem.

Unless it turns out to be a problem.