PBT’s Monday NBA Winners/Losers: Blake Griffin played like royalty
Every night the NBA can be a cold hard reality — there are winners, there are losers. It’s the nature of the game. We know you are busy and can’t keep up with every game, so we’re here to bring you the best and worst of the NBA each week night. Here’s what you missed while solving the mystery of the green cat....
Blake Griffin. He played like the best power forward in the game Monday night, scoring 45 points on 24 shots, scoring with power moves and a smooth jumper. After falling in love with saod jumper early in the season he has found a balance — he was 4-of-9 from the midrange, plus was 7-of-9 within three feet of the basket, meaning he was attacking the rim and doing things like this:
But that wasn’t even his best shot of the night — Griffin hit a step-back three to win the game for the Clippers 121-120 in overtime. Well, maybe it wasn’t his best shot — he admits it was flat and he thought he’d missed it, but it caught the front of the rim just right and... well, when you score 45 points you get some kind rolls
Eric Bledsoe. In what was a revenge game against his former team the Clippers (well, he wouldn’t admit that but he played like it) Bledsoe recorded the Suns first triple-double since 2006 — 27 points (on 16 shots), 16 assists and 11 rebounds. He even blocked Chris Paul’s driving layup/floater to preserve tie and send game to overtime. “He played great,” Suns coach Jeff Hornacek said. “He penetrated and kicked it out. He made the plays. He made the great block at the end, too. We have to have our guys play well like that to compete with some of these teams.”
John Wall. We could put up the stats — 26 points and 17 assists, and note he scored the final 10 Wizards points as they came from 7 down in the second overtime to beat the Celtics. We could tell you how Wall’s speed with the ball pressured the Celtics all night and they just couldn’t deal with him. We could tell you how, in a league rich with quality point guards, Wall has risen up to be one of the true elites. But really, all you need to know about Wall comes in this video of his post game interview.
Wall befriended and helped Miyah, who turned six this year, meet Nicki Minaj. You can see the entire backstory here from the Washington Post, it’s well worth your time.
Kate Middleton and Prince William. Why them? Because they were more into the game than the Nets. And the royal couple missed a good chunk of the game because they ate in the arena beforehand. Also, them meeting Jay-Z was more interesting than the Nets or this game (another easy win for the Cavaliers, who are finding a groove).
Kevin Garnett. Really KG? Is this how you want to act in front of royalty (I’m talking Jay-Z and Beyonce, combined they’re worth more than those other two celebs at the game). KG, you realize the Cavaliers were absolutely drilling your team, right? Ran you out of your own gym. On the bright side, at least he’s trying to pick on someone his own size for a change.
Al Horford. The Hawks had another win, this one 108-92, 25 points, eight rebounds, three assists, and three blocks. While everyone is watching Toronto and Chicago, the Hawks have put together a nice run and climbed the standings in the East. In large because of Horford. While the Pacers stodd around on defense or on the glass, Horford had energy (to go with his tremendous skills) and that separated him from everyone wearing yellow Monday night.