Blake Griffin Declares for NBA Draft
It was an inevitable announcement, as the nation watched Blake Griffin play like a giant amongst dwarfs in his sophomore year at Oklahoma. Griffin shot .654 from the field in 2008-09, averaging 22.7 points and 14.4 rebounds for a Sooners team that almost rode him to the Final Four. Now, he projects as the #1 pick in this June’s NBA Draft. Griffin is a prototypical power forward, although he has the size to play center if need be. He will eventually put up similar numbers that he did in Oklahoma for whatever NBA team lands the #1 overall pick in this year’s draft lottery. He’s a monster in the paint, a relentless rebounder, and tireless worker. He is simply head and shoulders above the rest of the 2009 draft class.
Griffin was a unanimous selection for the Associated Press All-American Team, and took home the 2009 Naismith Award for the Nation’s outstanding college basketball player. Stephen A. Smith recently talked to several experts who predict Griffin to be a superstar in the NBA. Most seem to believe this kid is a blue-chipper, and considering his scoring and rebounding ability combined with his size and athleticism, it’s almost impossible to disagree. Obviously any team could use him in their lineup, but out of the teams with the best chances to get the #1 pick- that is, the bottom five teams in the NBA standings- Sacramento and Oklahoma City look like the best places for Griffin, as those teams lack an impact presence at power forward and/or center. The Washington Wizards, however, have the best odds of landing him. A big 4 of Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison and Butler could make them an instant contender.
Here are some highlights from his press conference:
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Others have declared their eligibility for the NBA Draft, including Pittsburgh’s DeJuan Blair, Kentucky’s Jodie Meeks, and Arizona’s Chase Budinger. Those three also project as first-round picks. But make no mistake about it: Griffin leads the pack by a country mile.
To see what everyone is talking about, check out the below video for some highlights from Griffin’s time as a Sooner.
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