It's no secret the Oklahoma City Thunder will be interested in pairing Blake Griffin with superstar point guard and MVP candidate Russell Westbrook this offseason, when the Los Angeles Clippers power forward, who has an early termination options come season's end, will almost certainly be a free agent.
One thing they've got going for them, other than that Griffin is from Oklahoma City and spent a year playing for the Sooners: He is thoroughly impressed with Westbrook's 2016-17 campaign, and thinks it's ludicrous that anyone else would be considered for the MVP award.
HoopsHype's Alex Kennedy asked Griffin if Westbrook's season is "the best individual season [he's] ever seen."
"Yes," Griffin responded. "It almost blows my mind to think that anybody else could win MVP this year. That’s not taking anything away from James [Harden] and Kawhi [Leonard] and LeBron [James] because they’ve had excellent seasons too, but Russ’ production is crazy. And the things that set it apart are their record when he’s had triple-doubles, his PER and his PER in the clutch. As a player, those are all the things you look for—a player who’s going to make his team better, a player that wins games for you and a player who performs when you need him to. I honestly never thought I’d see someone average a triple-double. That’s why Russ’ run has been so mind-blowing. It takes an insane amount of energy to do that. You have to be involved in everything and have such a high motor."
Back in August, Basketball Insiders reported that sources close to Griffin said he will re-sign with the Clippers after the season. When Kennedy asked Griffin about free agency, he focused his answer on the upcoming playoffs but also didn't go out of his way to say he'd be returning to Los Angeles.
"I can’t worry about a decision that I can’t make right now. We still have so much basketball left to play. The playoffs are about to start and this literally what we spent all last summer, the preseason and the regular season preparing for. We were preparing for this," Griffin said. "To be focused on something else would be a travesty to the rest of my team, to my coaching staff, to our fans, to everybody. Those decisions and whatever happens in the summer will be there in the summer.
"Honestly, I was kind of curious what it would be like going into a contract year and playing the season out like that, but it’s no different. It really isn’t. You always see other players go through it [so you wonder what it’s like], but it really hasn’t been different. Our focus has been really good this year."