On Thursday night the
Nowitzki missed all six of his fourth-quarter shot attempts, one of which was blocked by Griffin, who also pressured Nowitzki into throwing the ball into the backcourt for a turnover with 38.9 seconds left and the scored tied.
After the game it was clear Griffin wanted to let the media know that he can do more than just dunk the ball and that he has as improved as a defender.
"The past few years or so, all I've ever heard is everything I can't do," Griffin said. "I take pride in those things people say I can't do, and [defense,] that's one of them. There's a long list. . . .
"So, I just use that as motivation and try to get better. Obviously there are areas I need to get better in, but at the same time, I think sometimes people get a little carried away."
And with that, Griffin weaved his way past the media throng and walked away.
The night before at New Orleans, Griffin went head-to-head with the
"We talk about all the other stuff — his offense and passing — [but] Blake the last two games . . . his defense has been off the charts," Clippers Coach
Griffin has impressed enough basketball pundits that he's generating some support in the discussion about
The obvious favorites for the award this season are Oklahoma City's
But Dallas Coach
"He's having a monster year," Carlisle said. "And he's playing at a high level. Those are usually the two ingredients that get you in that [MVP] conversation. I mean, it's legit. . . . I don't think he'll win it. But I think him being in the conversation is legit."
Griffin is averaging 24.3 points per game this season, sixth-best in the NBA. He had scored at least 20 points in 30 consecutive games before the streak ended against the Mavericks.