Despite Blake Griffin’s woes to start the season, coach Steve Nash said he has no intention of benching the struggling center.
Griffin has started every game but one (rested on the front end of one back-to-back). It says much about his season that his eight-point, five-board Sunday night against his old Pistons team was his best performance of the season.
Meanwhile, LaMarcus Aldridge had 16 points on 7 of 8 shooting to finish a plus-13, coming off the bench yet again.
“There’s no [plan to pull him]. We’re not really thinking about changing roles,” Nash said before Brooklyn’s 117-91 rout of Detroit. “BG’s been successful there for us in the past, and LaMarcus is successful coming off the bench right now. So there’s no reason to make any big changes.
“It’s been great to see LaMarcus feel so comfortable after his retirement and coming back, finding his footing and his rhythm and playing with great purpose. So it’s great to see, and right now we’ll keep him there.”
Griffin is averaging just 4.8 points on 28.6 percent shooting, including 2 of 17 from deep.
“We all go through different periods where we won’t have our rhythm, our confidence; and that’s what he’s going through right now. So it’s normal. We just don’t expect it from him because he’s shot the ball well for us,” Nash said. “But it’s normal. Everyone goes through their moments where they struggle to shoot the ball. … He’s just finding his rhythm.”
Aldridge is third on the team in scoring (12.7) and first in plus-minus (+6.3).
“He’s like that calming force,” Kevin Durant said. “You can throw the ball to him in the post, slow stuff down. He’s a good passer. Obviously great midrange shooter. Good back-to-the-basket player.
“It’s just about confidence and it looks like, that’s what we were all worried about coming back from what he came back from, how he would look physically and timing-wise but some of them things it’s just in your DNA so him coming out there knocking down shots just knowing how to play is there.”
Nic Claxton sat a third straight game with a non-COVID illness, and could miss at another week or more.
“Nic’s going to be out a little bit. He’s not feeling well,” Nash said. “Nothing to be concerned with, but I don’t think he’s going to be back in the next week or 10 days. Just an illness, but it’s nothing major that we’re overly concerned with. It’s just a little more severe illness than we thought initially.”