The Los Angeles Clippers were dealt a couple of death blows Monday night in the team’s 98-84 loss to the Portland Trailblazers. In addition to the broken hand that could cost point guard Chris Paul the rest of the playoffs, Blake Griffin’s quad injury reared its ugly head once again.
Head coach Doc Rivers wasn’t optimistic about Griffin’s availability for Game 5 Wednesday after the power forward’s setback with the same injury that cost him months of action during the regular season.
“It doesn’t look great for him, either,” Rivers said, per Robert Morales of the Los Angeles Daily News. “We’ll see about it tomorrow.
“We’re not sure with Blake yet. I think he’ll get evaluated tomorrow when we get back. I would say 50-50 on the next game with him. I expect him to be back, but we don’t know that yet. So I don’t want to say much.”
One thing to remember as it concerns Griffin’s quad injury is that the Clippers initially misjudged the severity and nature and were much more optimistic about his return than they should have been. Even when he came back to action, Griffin admitted the quad wasn’t 100 percent healthy.
“… It just wasn’t being allowed to heal,” Griffin said earlier this month, per Dan Woike of the Orange County Register. “The tear is still there. It’s just about managing the pain and getting through this. It’s not a new tear. I wasn’t re-tearing my knee in different places. I wasn’t allowing the initial injury to completely heal.”
Since his return to action, Griffin hasn’t exactly been dominant on the court for the Clippers. He’s generally struggled from the floor and hasn’t been as effective defensively as he is when fully healthy.
Still, if Griffin isn’t able to play in Game 5, there is no doubt Los Angeles will be in a bind playing without its starting point guard and power forward.