If you've ever listened to The Basketball Jones podcast, they have taken to calling the Los Angeles Clippers "Flop City" instead of Lob City, because of the antics of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Reggie Evans.
Whatever your views on Blake Griffin are, there are two things that are true about him. He is one of the most athletic big men in the game right now, and he tends to embellish fouls or outright flop to get calls from the referees.
My personal views on Blake Griffin are complicated, as I think he is a breathtaking athlete, but he also annoys me to no end with his whining and flopping. Watching a Clippers game is a mix of emotions, as one second he will fall over after being grazed by a smaller player, and the next he will fly through the air for a ferocious slam.
One of his major problems mirrors that of LeBron James. He's in too good shape to be flopping. LeBron is built like a brick wall, the man weighs 250 pounds of all muscle. Griffin is listed at 251, and the fact that both of them routinely go flying when pushed by much smaller players just looks silly.
Why did Griffin start flopping? Well, when you think about the players who flop around the league, it's usually the stars who are trying to get to the line more. In my opinion, the fact that Blake got so famous last year for his dunks did not help him as a basketball player at all.
Blake became the face of SportsCenter, taking over the Top 10 plays with his dunks. And don't get me wrong, they were incredible and he is one of the two or three best in-game dunkers in the league. But, they boosted his ego up too much, and now he thinks he deserves the star treatment from referees.
I don't really think anyone deserves to get calls just because they are a superstar, but at least when Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade do it, they have paid their dues in the league. It is only Griffin's second year, but he expects to get treated like a veteran player.
This has caused a backlash on Griffin, as he has gone from one of the most popular players to almost a villain in only a year. For fans who only watch the highlights, Griffin remains a favorite. But for those that watch the full games, he has turned into a player who both amazes and annoys.
The scary thing about Blake Griffin is that he is widely considered one of the best players in the game, and he is only 23 years old. With a full summer and training camp of practice, Griffin should be able to practice both his jump shot and develop some post moves to compliment his spin move.
However he plays next year, I hope Griffin quits the flopping. He is a tremendously talented player, whose game gets looked down on because of his embellishing. He is one of the few players who doesn't seem to take plays off, and he truly hustles and tries his hardest.
If he can quit the flopping, he should not have a problem winning back the fans with his monstrous dunks.