Thunder notebook: Blake Griffin applauded, then becomes enemy

By John Rohde, Staff Writer, jrohde@opubco.com Published: February 22, 2011

The sellout crowd of 18,203 inside Oklahoma City Arena gave former Oklahoma standout Blake Griffin a loud ovation during pre-game introductions, but the Clippers rookie became the enemy from that moment forward.

Thunder fans cheered every time Griffin was called for a foul or missed a free throw (10 for 17).

Griffin finished with 28 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists in the Thunder's 111-88 victory on Tuesday night. He secured his 47th double-double of the season with 6:39 left in the third quarter and left with 3:23 remaining in the game and the Thunder ahead by 21.

* Griffin had half his double-double secured after just 5 1/2 minutes. Eight minutes into the game, he had 12 points and five rebounds, which put him on pace for 72 points and 30 rebounds.

* With 4:05 left in the third quarter, Griffin drew Jeff Green's fourth personal foul on a pump fake and layup. Chomping on his mouth guard, Griffin stared Green down. Not intimidated in the least, Green responded with a smile.

* With 1:17 left in the third, Griffin went up and did a 360 from about 5 feet, only to be called for his fourth foul when Nick Collison drew his 35th charge of the season. That's rare, taking a charge on a 360.

* The most positive fan reaction toward Griffin came with 7:15 left in the game and the Clipper trailing 91-69. Griffin spun around defender Serge Ibaka for a back-door, one-handed, ally-oop.

THE OTHER SOONER

Clippers rookie guard Willie Warren, who was Griffin's teammate for one season at OU, played the final 3:23, went 0 for 2 from the field and had two assists.

While Warren has been up and down from the Developmental League, Griffin became an All-Star.

“I'm sure he's having a blast,” Warren said of Griffin. “He's doing everything I knew he could do just by seeing him my one year at Oklahoma. I knew he'd be a star and it's happened faster than a lot of people probably thought.”



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