On Monday night, during the Los Angeles Clippers warm up, Blake Griffin suffered a strained left hamstring doing Blake Griffin stuff. The three time All-Star was a late scratch and for the first time in 197 games, he joined Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups on the bench. Paul has been out for the last eight games with a bone bruise on his knee. Billups has been out most of the season because he’s injured and also, very old.
With the two center pieces of the franchise out, the depth of the Clippers bench was tested.
Jamal Crawford went to work like he always does but DeAndre Jordan and Eric Bledsoe went above and beyond to try to get the Clippers the win. Although, the Clippers lost, the Washington Wizards didn’t take the Clippers to the woodshed.
Bledsoe did something that he has been trying to do since college, he outplayed John Wall. Jordan played like he didn’t want to be apart of the rumored Kevin Garnett trade.
Bledsoe’s energy died down a little during the fourth quarter but he had 17 points, nine assists and two blocks. Although, Paul can’t be replaced, Bledsoe distributed well and did everything that the average starting point guard would do. Plus a little special something that only Bledsoe can offer.
Jordan had a career high 22 rebounds and 7 points and, while he didn’t really make a significant attempt to provide offense, he played outstanding defense. Jordan may have held back on offense to avoid getting into foul trouble. However, he made 75% of his field goal attempts.
For the past month or so, the Clippers have been trying to trade Jordan and Bledsoe as a package deal but both players are quickly proving themselves essential to the team’s postseason ambitions.