With his projected season debut just a week away, Clippers No. 1 overall pick Blake Griffin faked a season-ending injury, in hopes he would never have to play for the cursed franchise.
"I wasn't thrilled to be drafted by the Clippers. But I didn't have a choice," Griffin said. "Then I got hurt in the preseason and it dawned on me — I hold the power. I can avoid playing here forever if I handled this the right way. If I can just trick the Clippers into thinking I'm injury-prone, they might trade me to a decent team and my career. I have hope again. Going through the pain of unnecessary surgery can't take that away."
Griffin's "injury" is the latest setback for a franchise that has won just one playoff series since leaving Buffalo in the late '70s. Still, Clippers coach/GM Mike Dunleavy remains optimistic about Griffin's future.
"This is just a minor setback in what we hope will be a long and fruitful career for Blake," he said. "We see him averaging 7 points and 3 rebounds for us for many years to come. We're talking Michael Olowakandi numbers."
Before Griffin dramatically screamed and fell to ground in his recent rehab session — screaming "Oh! Cruel fates! I am hurt! I am a broken man! Woe is me!" — Griffin let agent Jeff Schwartz know that this latest setback would be entirely fabricated. Schwartz has already been in contact with more than a dozen other NBA franchises to let them know that Griffin is perfectly healthy and ready to play for a team with a winning history beginning next October.
But Dunleavy remains convinced that after his star's "rehab", Griffin will be playing at a mediocre level with the Clippers for years to come.
"Blake's not going anywhere," said Dunleavy. "You can't shed the stigma of being a Clipper easily, even by just playing with us in the preseason. It sticks with you forever, dragging you ever lower. And if we traded every player who didn't want to play for the Clippers, we wouldn't have enough to put a team on the court. Heck, I don't even want to be here. But no matter what I do, they won't fire me. It's infuriating."