Against the Philadelphia 76ers, Blake Griffin managed to score a career-high 50 points, while recording 14 rebounds, 6 assists, a block and a game-winning and-1 layup to lead the Pistons to a 133-132 win. For the past few years, Blake Griffin had developed a reputation for being an often-injured dunker who has passed his athletic prime. The former member of Lob City has missed 45 games (out of 167) over the last three seasons so far, in his injury-riddled career.
Drafted in 2009, Blake Griffin was known early in his career for his high vertical. He won the dunk contest in 2011, and teamed up with Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan to form Lob City. Lob City was known for their athletic alley-oops and poster dunks.
Griffin, along with Willie Reed and Brice Johnson, were traded to the Detroit Pistons last season for Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic and a draft pick that later on became Miles Bridges. In the 25 games he played for the Pistons last season, Blake averaged a respectable 19.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg and 6.2 apg on 43% from the field. Although the Pistons were expected to make a late playoff push behind the duo of Griffin and Andre Drummond, they ultimately fell short, finishing as the 9th seed in the Eastern Conference.
This year is a different story. For the first time in a few years, Griffin was able to stay healthy entering the offseason, allowing him to work and train his body properly. He has been working hard all summer, and the results are showing. He scored 26 points in his first game, followed by a 33 point, 12 rebound performance in his second game.
In his third game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Griffin exploded for what could be the best game of his career. As mentioned, he scored 50 points, grabbed 14 boards and dished out 6 assists while shooting 57% from the field. He also made 5 three pointers and only committed one turnover in 44 minutes of play. Griffin also delivered on an incredible driving layup to tie the game with 1 second remaining in overtime, while also getting fouled at the rim. He made his free throw, which in the end was the game-winning shot to put the Pistons on top.
While it may be a small sample size, Blake Griffin is averaging a league-leading 36.3 ppg, 11.3 rpg and 5.7 apg on 53% from the field, 61% from beyond the three point arc, and 64% from the free throw line for the 2018-19 season. Despite only playing in 3 games so far, Blake Griffin’s season looks incredibly bright as he is slowly silencing those who have criticized him, one game at a time. Who knows? Maybe he could still be in MVP-contention by the end of the season.