Clippers' Blake Griffin has best game since elbow surgery

Clippers' Blake Griffin has best game since elbow surgery
Clippers forward Blake Griffin, center, looks to pass as Golden State Warriors teammates David Lee, left, and Andrew Bogut defend during the Clippers' 110-106 loss at Staples Center on Tuesday. (Paul Buck / EPA)

In Blake Griffin's ninth game back after missing 15 because of a staph infection in his right elbow that required surgery, the Clippers' superstar power forward finally seemed back to his old self.

Griffin had 40 points, 12 rebounds, five assists, three blocks and made all eight of his free-throws in the Clippers' 110-106 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday.

"With him being able to score like that and passing the ball as well as he does, he's a double threat on the basketball court for us," DeAndre Jordan said.

It's been a long road to recovery for Griffin.

When Griffin returned to the court on March 15, he said that his elbow was sore and that his triceps were relatively weak. Griffin said that shooting from 10 feet felt as though he were shooting from 15 feet, adding that his strength was only at 60%.

In Tuesday's game, he no longer felt as though he was overshooting, but his shots would fall short. Griffin called it was his best performance since his extended absence.

"As far as rhythm-wise yeah," he said.

Griffin opened the game strong, scoring 12 points in the first quarter on six for seven shooting. He helped the Clippers lead by as many as 17 points in the first half, before Golden State tied up the game in the third quarter.

Griffin, however, was quick to add that he still needs to work on a few things.

"Defensively being on rotations and being a little bit better," he said. "Mentally, being locked in and knowing where to be."

For the Clippers, who are in fifth place in the highly competitive Western Conference with only seven games remaining in the regular season, it's a great time for Griffin to have rediscovered his groove.

"When he faces up and attacks you, there's nobody in this league that can stay in front of him," Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said.