Blake Griffin gets away with murder, and you’re a bad person if you disagree.
by Farmer Jones / @thefarmerjones
I admit I don’t really like Blake Griffin. I’m not sure I can explain why, but I was feeling this way even before his sense of humor started echoing his game: Too often one-dimensional, predictable, and destined to lose its effectiveness before long. I’ve joked on the Twitters about how you have to pick sides between Blake and Kevin Love, which is true even thought it’s not (it is, though, totally). I don’t have a problem with guys who jump high and dunk on guys. But I do have a problem with Blake.
Last night reminded me why. It’s why I have a problem with a lot of you people, too.
What’s wrong with you people?
I don’t hold your visceral reaction against you. If you have a pulse, those dunks—both of them—are the sort that demand an instantaneous “Oh my god!” response. The question—and the sole basis for which I judge you as a decent human being—is how you responded after that initial response.
If you couldn’t get past the visceral to at least acknowledge the obvious reality of the situation—that Blake Griffin got away with murder, twice—then you shouldn’t be allowed to watch basketball anymore. Not until you take a class or something, like people do after they get a DUI. You need to spend a really long, tedious, physically uncomfortable time thinking about the consequences of reckless actions. You need to be made to understand.
Blake Griffin is awesome at jumping higher than most people are able to jump and grabbing a basketball with one (or sometimes two, but mostly one) hand and cocking it back behind his ear and then throwing it down really hard through a hoop. I understand and agree that this is very much fun to watch.
I understand as well that there is a gray area where Blake Griffin does this sort of thing and other players are embarrassed in a way that might constitute excessive force and maybe almost breaks the rules, but I’m okay with that.
There was no “maybe almost” last night.
You cannot jump into and over a guy’s back that way to dunk a basketball, no matter how cool it looks.
You cannot jump into a guy and elbow him pretty directly in the face to dunk a basketball, regardless of the awesomeness of said procedure.
The rules are pretty clear on all this.
I know the rules are bent, a lot, and for a lot of players. This is something all NBA fans learn to accept early in their NBA fandom. But it can go too far, and so it has with Blake Griffin. Especially last night. We’re rewarding him—actively encouraging him, actually—to blatantly break the rules in a way that plays to our enjoyment of guys doing physically improbable things and embarrassing their opponents in the process.
The thing I just described is one of the best things about watching basketball. But there’s a line, and like a stupid Kia with Baron Davis is in, Blake has jumped way over it.
We should stop celebrating such leaps.
Those were fouls. They should’ve been called.
What’s wrong with you people?