Los Angeles Clippers: Oroando
February, 25, 2012
By Shelley Smith | ESPNLosAngeles.com
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE/Getty ImagesBlake Griffin knows the rigors of an All-Star Weekend can take on a player.
At last year’s All-Star Game, Blake Griffin did it all. He played in what was then the Rookie-Sophomore Game, he competed in (and famously won) the dunk contest, and he played in the so-called varsity game Sunday night. And all in his town. And it took a toll on him.
“It affected me for a month,” Griffin said, remembering how he got sick with the flu after the weekend.
So this year, with the Clippers in third place in the Western Conference, he said he had to scale it down. He played in what's now called the Rising Stars Challenge on Friday night, but asked for limited minutes and played nine. He is taking Saturday night off to be with friends and family, but will play Sunday night as one of four Los Angeles-based starters for the West.
Last season put Blake Griffin on the map. His career had been roller-coaster-like: a good career at Oklahoma, being drafted by the Clippers, sitting out a season with a knee injury, and then emerging in the lofty place he found himself at the end of All-Star Weekend.
He watched closely the past month as the Knicks' Jeremy Lin took an eerily similar lightning-fast rise to the top. What advice would he give Lin?
"Enjoy it. For sure, be able to say no to things," Blake told ESPN radio. "It's going to be extremely hectic for him, so he should pace himself. Everyone's going to be pulling at him different ways and as quickly as they build you up, they're going to try to tear you down, so don't get too caught up in all that."