Report: Blake Griffin out 4-6 weeks after breaking hand in fight with Clippers' staffer

Ball Don't Lie
Report: Blake Griffin out 4-6 weeks after breaking hand in fight with Clippers' staffer
Report: Blake Griffin out 4-6 weeks after breaking hand in fight with Clippers' staffer

Los Angeles Clippers star Blake Griffin has missed the last month with a quadriceps injury, but by traveling with his team during its recent Eastern road swing, it was assumed that the forward was soon to return.

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Unfortunately, it appears as if he got a little handsy with a member of the team’s equipment staff, and that return date might be pushed back a bit.

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Allegedly, Griffin got into a scrape with a member of Clippers staff after viewing his squad’s poor performance against the Toronto Raptors. The hashtag-happy SportsCenter anchor Michael Eaves has the tweets:

This comes after ESPN’s Marc Stein relayed the news, calling it a result of “a team-related activity,” prior to pointing out that we won’t be seeing Blake for a while:

Griffin leads the Clippers in scoring at 23.2 points per game, while adding 8.7 rebounds and over five assists a contest in what was a fantastic start to the season. The Clippers, however, have got along just fine in his absence, winning 11 of 14 games. The team has dropped two of three on its current road trip, however, and has to face down both the Pacers and Hawks before being allowed to skip back to El Lay.

Griffin will be out four-to-six weeks with the broken hand, the team announced Tuesday afternoon. A midpoint of five weeks would return Griffin to the team just in time to face the Thunder (twice), Hawks, Mavericks, Warriors, Spurs, Rockets, Grizzlies, Knicks and Cavaliers all within an 11-game span.

The Clippers also said they are investigating the incident.

The Clippers forward earned a starting spot on the All-Star team with his first 30 games, but the fans failed to vote him into the exhibition last week, and it was doubtful the coaches would push Griffin in as a reserve as he’s already missed a third of his team’s contests. More importantly, the setback could allow Oklahoma City to run away with the third seed in the West – the Thunder are four games ahead of the Clippers, who are currently three games ahead of Memphis in the Western playoff bracket, stuck in fourth place.

This means the team will likely play Golden State in the Western Conference semis. The Clippers did not get a chance to take on the Warriors during Golden State’s championship run last year, and any bit of pairing between the Clips and a high-end opponent is a daunting one: Los Angeles is winless in eight games against high-end playoff-types like the Warriors, Thunder, Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs, and Toronto Raptors.

Who knows if those Raptors (who put up 44 points in the first 16 minutes of the team’s eventual win over the Clippers on Sunday) had anything to do with this reported altercation? The Clippers have performed well with Blake on the sidelines, but only against teams they’re supposed to perform well against. Even with months to go before spring hits, this is unfortunate timing.

Lead with your left, next time, Blake.

 

 

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Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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