Blake Griffin: Leveling Up
In the ongoing discussion focused around Blake Griffin and just how good he may or may not be, I present exhibit “A” (originally a gif, but it was taking too long to load so just click play; you won’t regret it):
Besides LeBron James, what other big guy comes even remotely close to being able to do this? THAT’s a POWER forward!
Seerat Sohi and Zach Lowe recently put up a couple of great pieces at ClipperBlog and Grantland respectively. You should check them out to get an expanded, and well-written breakdown of what makes Blake Griffin a special player.
As for my thoughts on the matter, well, they’re a little biased seeing as how I root for the Clippers. In spite of that, however, what cannot be taken away is the amount of progress that we’re seeing from Blake – improved shooting and free-throw percentage, increased handles, smarter decisions while airborne and a maturity of the desire to win above all else.
I left the following comment on Seerat’s piece, so instead of re-writing it here, I thought I’d just quote myself—that’s right, quote myself. #DontHate
…Blake Griffin, has shown tremendous improvement in key areas that afflicted his effectiveness last season, especially as of late.
In addition to an ever-improving midrange shot and Crawfordesque handles, Blake has begun to focus on defenders’ weaknesses instead of relying merely on his strengths. In exploiting those weakness, whether they emanate from a defender’s lack of speed, strength or IQ, Blake is transcending beyond just a highlight player.
Griffin even implemented the scoop into his game this season. More often than not he’s finishing plays with a finger-roll instead of violently attempting to throw it down while we hold our breaths.
As bummed as I was to see Chris Paul go down, it’s allowed the development of Griffin even more. Big ups to the young man! May he develop that Swiss army knife of skills even more!
It’s like the beast is finally self-aware. Not only will you be immortalized if you get in his way after takeoff, now you run the risk of looking silly and lost if he’s running the point.
How do you feel about Blake Griffin’s improvements? Are you still a hater? Or do you think he could one day occupy the title of “Best Power Forward in the game”? Sound off!