This is the fourteenth of our Clips Nation "exit interviews" of the 2012
In a Nutshell
After losing his entire rookie season to injury, power forward Blake Griffin started every game the last two seasons for the Los Angeles Clippers. This year he was named to the starting slot on the All Star team and is second team all-NBA. While his overall numbers were slightly down this year as compared to his first seaon, the team relied on him less for scoring and rebounds and his PER actually went up, from 22 to 23.5. Simply put, Blake Griffin's good, leading the team in scoring and rebounding. He is also reliable, not only starting every game but averaging 38 minutes a game (eighth in the league).
But Griffin's main contributions to the Clippers may have nothing to do with rebounds or scoring. He is, quite simply, one of the most compelling basketball players to come down the pike in a while. His athletic prowess, his magnetism, and off-the-court charm not only draws fans to the arena, it draws other players. There seems little doubt that without Blake Griffin on the team, the Clippers would not have acquired Chris Paul last off-season. With a strong showing and a playoff appearance this past year, there would seem little reason that trend shouldn't continue. Of course the Clipper organization has to hold up its end on that front... but more about that later.
For the LA Clippers, an organization that has been mediocre (or worse) for thirty years, Blake Griffin seems exactly what the doctor ordered. His value to the Clippers must be viewed as more than his value as a player but as an entity who might change the culture of the organization. He is, to the Clippers, a figure of potential heroic dimension.