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NBA Analysis: Clippers Del Negro Defends Griffin

By Jerel Marshall

Each year the announcement of the NBA All-Star rosters is accompanied with a lists of complaints and snubs and this year is no different as Portland Trailblazer guard Andre Miller has came out and blasted rookie phenom, Blake Griffin’s selection.

The Oregonian reports Miller said that his teammate, LaMarcus Aldridge, is more deserving.

“They are putting this guy on every ESPN highlight,” Miller vented to the media. “Yeah, it’s cool because fans want to see that, but you isolate him from his team. Especially, he ain’t made nobody better. It’s basically his rookie year, as an All-Star? LeBron James didn’t make an All-Star team as a rookie.”

Clearly Miller hasn’t forgot the altercation with Griffin which ended in him launching into the rookie human cannonball style and earning him a suspension.

Friday night, Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro came to the defense of his star player.

“He is worthy of [the All-star selection],” Del Negro said during a pre-game press conference. “He deserves to be in it. We’ve had more success at home lately and our record indicates that he has been a huge part of that.”

Del Negro did not spare his tongue when Miller’s comments were brought up.

“That’s why player’s should just play and leave the rest of it up to their coaches,” Del Negro said. “That’s just not accurate. The stats speak for themselves and we will just leave it at that.”

Del Negro said he can understand why Miller made the comments.

“He is probably just sticking up for LaMarcus Aldridge who I think should have made it,” Del Negro said.

Although many think that Blake Griffin was the obvious choice of the two, the decision is not so clear cut. Blake Griffin has the better numbers as he is averaging 23 points, 12.7 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. Aldridge is averaging 21.3 points, nine rebounds and two assists per game.

Griffin seems to be sparking the turnaround that has eluded the Clippers for years. On the other-hand, Aldridge has emerged as the leader on one of the most injury prone teams in the league. Since Brandon Roy fell victim to knee injuries again this season, Aldridge has elevated his team to the next level and still has his squad in the hunt for a playoff berth.

Regardless of what fans or bitter point guards may think, a decision has been made.

“I think wins matter,” Del Negro said. “But its out of your control. You vote for who you vote for, the others coaches do and you have to just go with it. Every year there is always one or two, sometimes three that deserve but don’t get on. Its unfortunate but that’s the system and that’s the way it works.”


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