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Monday, May 12, 2014
Serge Ibaka won't face discipline

By Arash Markazi

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Thunder forward Serge Ibaka will not be disciplined for striking Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin in the groin during Sunday's game, a league official confirmed.

Ibaka hit Griffin in the groin as Griffin was going up for a shot less than a minute into Game 4. No foul was called and Ibaka claimed the hit was an accident, which the league agreed with, deciding not to fine or suspend him for Tuesday's Game 5.

Clippers coach Doc Rivers thought the league should look into the play and believes Griffin has taken more punishment, including illegal hits, than any player in the league this season.

"It is hard to keep your cool," Rivers said. "You're getting hit, I think at times illegal hits. I think he's been taking them all year and he's been doing a great job of it. I don't know if anyone has taken more punishment this year than Blake. In my opinion, some of them have been aboveboard and some of them have not been. People keep getting away with it.

"If he reacts one time, then he hurts the team. That's what I've told him all year, that the tougher, stronger guy is the guy that is willing to take the hits for his team and keep playing. That's what Blake has done, so I'm very proud of him. We need him. Teams are trying to do anything they can to get him off the floor, try to get him to react, and he hasn't done that. He just keeps playing, and that's really important for us."

Last year, Ibaka was fined $25,000 but not suspended for hitting Griffin in the groin during a regular season game on March 3, 2013.

When Griffin was asked about getting hit below the belt by Ibaka again on Sunday he was at a loss for words.

"I don't know," Griffin said. "I really don't know. I can't get into his head and I'm not going to try."