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Blake Griffin has tough task in resurrecting Clippers

by Jenni Carlson Modified: June 26, 2009 at 2:04 pm •  Published: June 26, 2009
Michael Jackson is found in a coma, rushed to the hospital and pronounced dead as hundreds of reporters descend on his mansion and on the hospital in Los Angeles.

In other news, Farrah Fawcett dies and Arnold Schwarzenegger threatens a veto.

In still other news, the Clippers draft Blake Griffin.

And so it begins.

The Clipper Curse reared its ugly head before the team could even draft the big man. Thursday was supposed to be a night for the snake-bit franchise to bask in the glow. The Clippers not only had the top overall pick in the NBA Draft but also had the chance to take a player who might change their fortunes.

Talk about big news.

But not now. Not in Hollywood. Not after the King of Pop died.

Welcome to L.A., Big Blake.

Worse than that, welcome to the Clippers. Griffin knows all about their poor history. The Oklahoma City native has been asked about it every time he’s done an interview since the night of the draft lottery.

He’s been asked about it so much that he goes on audio autopilot when asked about anything having to do with the Clippers’ past.

During an interview earlier this week: "I am not worried about anything that has happened in the past. I wasn’t a part of that, and a lot of the guys that are there now weren’t a part of it.”

During a television interview after he was drafted: "I’m not worried about what’s happened in the past. I’m only looking forward to the future.”

During a conference call: "It’s not about what happened in the past. It’s about what’s happening in the future. I’m not worried about anything that’s been going on. I’m only worried about what’s happening from here on out.”

Sounds a little like Griffin is trying to convince himself of that. Who can blame him? Since the franchise first moved to Southern California in 1976, the Clippers have never won their division but have finished last 15 times. Their winning percentage during that span has been .353.

What’s worse, they’ve made some of the biggest draft blunders of all time. There are so many examples that the rest of this column could be used chronicling all of them, but really, all you need to know about is the 1987 draft.

That year, the Clippers had the fourth overall pick and drafted Reggie Williams. Listen to Blake Griffin conference call

by Jenni Carlson
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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