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Doc Rivers, Mark Jackson add to war of words between Clippers and Warriors

Apr 19, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

Blake Griffin, Andrew Bogut, DeAndre Jordan, Darren Collison Blake Griffin, Andrew Bogut, DeAndre Jordan, Darren Collison

The matchup between the Clippers and Warriors is the rare first round playoff series that will feature a battle between two very good teams that don’t at all seem to like each other.

There have been multiple incidents this season — dust-ups, verbal jabs, and postgame confrontations. And now we have words being exchanged through the media before the series has even begun.

It began with Klay Thompson discussing the flopping tendencies of Blake Griffin. This is not news, really, as it’s widely accepted that Griffin’s style of play includes some additional flailing and exaggerating of contact, and in speaking with him in the past, he feels he has no choice given how physical other teams have historically played against him, while much of the contact he receives goes unnoticed by the officials.

But players typically don’t go there, especially not right before what’s likely to be a long playoff series is about to get started. Clippers coach Doc Rivers essentially laughed off Thompson’s remark, while encouraging his star to continue to flop if that’s even slightly contributed to this season’s success.

From Arash Markazi of ESPN Los Angeles:

Two days after Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson called out Clippers star Blake Griffin for flopping and playing out of control, L.A. coach Doc Rivers said he wants Griffin to keep doing what he’s been doing this season, even if that includes flopping.

“That’s Klay’s opinion; I don’t really care,” Rivers said Friday. “I just keep looking at what Blake’s done. If he’s flopping, then keep doing it because those numbers look awful good to me. So flop on. That’s the way I look at it. Whatever he’s done this year, I want him to keep doing exactly that. When the votes come for MVP, he’ll be in the top three.

“I’m good with anything anybody says. Blake, you just keep doing what you’re doing. What’s happening is Blake is kicking a lot of people’s butts and they need something to say about him.”

Warriors coach Mark Jackson chimed in as well, and fired a shot at J.J. Redick after he was informed of something Redick said that was likely misinterpreted.

From Ethan Sherwood Strauss of ESPN.com:

“If Klay guards Chris [Paul], Chris is going to be in about 4,200 pick-and-rolls a game,” Redick said. “We want Klay to be in those pick-and-rolls. Klay and Andre [Iguodala] are great defenders, so as much as we can wear those guys down, that would be great.”

Told of Redick’s comments, Jackson took the opportunity to praise Paul, a perennial All-Star, before firing a salvo in Redick’s direction.

Chris Paul‘s a heck of a player, future Hall of Famer,” Jackson said. “He’s an all-time great. I’m not sitting there saying we have a Chris Paul stopper, so it really doesn’t matter. At the end of the day, he’s going to create challenges. Not as many as if J.J. Redick was guarding him, but he’s going to create some challenges for our defense and any defense.”

It’s doubtful that when Jackson was asked about Redick’s remarks that he was told of the part where Redick said “Klay and Andre are great defenders.” But his willingness to engage and fire back just shows once more how little these teams like each other.

  1. ihavenonickname - Apr 19, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    gonna be a fantastic series. can’t wait

    • spthegr8 - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:46 PM

      LLS @ Mark Jackson comment. That was funny!! Gna be a good series. Hard to pick a winner tho.???

  2. bigmeechy74 - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    Mark jackson’s act is wearing thin. He is trying to turn a high flying exciting run and gun offense in to the knicks and heat of the late 90′s early 2000′s smh

    • jimeejohnson - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:24 PM

      He sure as hell ain’t turning them into today’s Knicks, who suck!

  3. timb12 - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    Uh oh! It’s a cat fight!!

  4. jerdogthompson - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:55 PM

    Headed to the game shortly. I will be close enough to Jackson and the rest of the team to remind them of how much they suck. Clippers will WIN this series in 5, 6 if the warriors get lucky and win more than one at home.

    • tmovingstar - Apr 19, 2014 at 11:52 PM

      Hey dumptruck, the Warriors will win it in 5 period. Lets see now, they lead 1-0 because the Clippers suck at home. The Warriors own them. And Curry had a terrible game. Just wait until he heats up. I think we might break out the brooms up here in the city by the bay.

  5. lakerade - Apr 19, 2014 at 1:44 PM

    GSW has a top rated defense this year, despite their reputation. How much of that is system, how much is Bogut? We’ll see soon.

  6. money2long - Apr 19, 2014 at 2:02 PM

    Klay is a great defender. But I wonder if people have finally come around to my side of the fence about who will end their career as the better pro, klay or Harrison. Hmm

  7. titansbro - Apr 19, 2014 at 2:51 PM

    So Doc is ok with Blake Griffin continuing to kill the game of basketball so long as he’s in the top 3 of MVP voting. Flopping is now a skill that can be added to your offensive repertoire. Red Aurbach predicted this. Very disappointing.

  8. pukpokito - Apr 19, 2014 at 3:19 PM

    can’t wait for the first thing that creates the spark on this on the court.

    • money2long - Apr 19, 2014 at 4:05 PM

      It would help if bogut were around

  9. imakcds - Apr 19, 2014 at 8:15 PM

    The main reason I cannot follow the Clippers is Blake Griffin: I can’t stand his antics. Seems that he’s always the one getting into altercations, then tries to act all innocent. He’s pizzed off alot of different players on different teams, they ALL can’t be at fault, especially when it always involves Blake.

  10. savvybynature - Apr 19, 2014 at 9:40 PM

    Griffin’s self-flop was just epic. One of the all-time great floppers already, even at such a young age. A truly amazing talent in the field of flopping, I don’t even know where his ceiling is yet. He may ultimately end up being the Jordan or Russell of pretending to get fouled, I have that much respect for his flopping game.

  11. hobagman69 - Apr 20, 2014 at 7:34 AM

    BS. Not cool to be so negative and start something over nothing. This is playoff basketball, son. These guys don’t dislike each other for a damn. They just want to win. Mark Jackson is cool as hell and he’s just having fun with a little dig. Reddick is laughing at it himself. If you’re gonna cry, then go sleep in a crib.

  12. gymtruthteller - Apr 20, 2014 at 10:13 PM

    Rivers is an overrated troll.

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