NBA Rumor: Blake Griffin Incident

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The next day he broke his right hand in a fight outside a restaurant with Matias Testi, a friend who was the club’s assistant equipment manager. “I never want to make excuses about that because it was my fault 100%,” Griffin says. “I think about it all the time, and I still feel really, really bad, for a lot of reasons. I let so many people down. But I’m not going to lie. I wasn’t in the best place mentally. It took a very unique certain set of circumstances for that to happen, and part of it was not being able to play. That set wheels in motion.”

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5 years ago via ESPN

Blake Griffin is apologizing to Los Angeles Clippers fans for punching the team’s assistant equipment manager last season, an incident he says was “100 percent my fault.” He was suspended four games and docked nearly $860,000 in pay for the altercation in January at a Toronto restaurant. Griffin broke his right hand and Matias Testi’s face was severely swollen. Testi no longer works for team, having left in late July with no reason given by the Clippers, who open training camp Tuesday in Irvine.
5 years ago via ESPN

Griffin said a few days after the altercation he received a call from his older brother Taylor, who said, “Man, what are you doing? This is not you. What are you doing this for?” “I was crushed,” Griffin said. “To hear that from him, somebody I’ve looked up to my whole life, who always tells me what I need to hear, that’s when I had a pretty big realization about who I am, and who I want to be. I don’t want to say what that realization was. I just want to go out and show you.”

Not all player fines go to the NBA. In the case of a player being fined by a team (Blake Griffin for example), the organization keeps the fine money. When the season kicked off in training camp, every player was given a player handbook. The handbook consists of a list of team rules and also includes a policy for player fines. The fines ranged from being late for practice to missing a rehab session with the training staff. The fines range up to $5,000, but under the CBA teams have the right to fine a player $20,000 for missing a promotional appearance and up to $7,500 for missing practice a third time during the season.

Griffin’s teammates didn’t necessarily need to see or hear him say he’s “truly, truly sorry” to know that he was remorseful or perturbed by the embarrassing situation. “That’s Blake,” Clippers sixth man Jamal Crawford told The Vertical. “He is so hard on himself while playing the game. He expects perfection when he’s playing basketball. He’ll have 25, eight and six, but if we lose, he’ll be like, ‘I could’ve did more. I should’ve did more.’ And that’s what’s always been impressive about him. So he’s always expected that from himself. So I know how hard it is now, dealing with this and what’s going on.”

The NBA’s investigation into the Blake Griffin incident at a Toronto restaurant on Jan. 23 will conclude soon and will likely result in discipline for the Los Angeles Clippers forward, league commissioner Adam Silver told USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday. In an NBA A to Z podcast interview that will air later this week, Silver discussed the fight between Griffin and the Clippers’ longtime assistant equipment manager, Matias Testi, that resulted in a broken right hand for the five-time All-Star. Griffin, who is expected to miss four to six weeks because of the hand injury, was on the verge of returning from a quadriceps tear that has had him out since Dec. 26.

“The only update right now is we’re continuing to investigate,” Adam Silver told USA TODAY Sports. “There (are) a lot of people that we want to talk to, and ultimately ensure that we have as complete an understanding as possible as to exactly what happened. I’d say from the league’s standpoint, of course it’s the last thing that you want to see happen. And whether it’s in the NBA, or in any industry, you have one co-worker, in essence, punching another co-worker. That’s a terrible thing. Blake has acknowledged that. But at the same time, I know he recognizes that there are consequences of his actions.”

“That’s what league offices are for, and that’s what team management is for (to determine such matters),” Silver said. “So we’re working closely with the Clippers on this investigation. I know Steve Ballmer recognizes that it’s the last thing he wants to be associated with as the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, and I know (Clippers president of basketball operations and head coach) Doc (Rivers) feels the same way. We want to bring this investigation to a conclusion fairly quickly.”

Kia isn’t exactly rushing to the defense of their superstar pitchman Blake Griffin — with the car company refusing to say if they’ll stand by the NBA star in the wake of his fistfight in Toronto. We reached out to Kia to ask if Blake’s job is safe … this is all we got back: “Kia is not offering comment on this matter.” Not exactly a rousing show of support for a guy who’s had a working relationship with Kia since 2011. We’re guessing Kia’s just waiting to see how the NBA investigation shakes out before committing to any course of action … can’t really blame ’em.

Legal experts don’t think criminal charges will be filed. They expressed surprise at the national attention the scuffle attracted and believe it’s in the best interest of the two men to resolve the matter privately. “The most likely outcome is that there are no criminal charges,” said Michael McCann, a sports law professor at the University of New Hampshire. “Any potential civil litigation would be settled out of court confidentially, without exposure to the media. It makes a lot of sense for everyone involved to resolve this dispute privately, not publicly. That’s the sensible path.”
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September 16, 2021 | 8:36 pm EDT Update
NBA star Giannis Antetokounmpo was in Greece for a meeting with the country’s prime minister Thursday and a special ceremony to bestow Greek citizenship on his mother Veronica and younger brother Alex. Antetokounmpo, who led the Milwaukee Bucks to the NBA championship in July, attended the ceremony at the official residence of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. The 26-year-old Antetokounmpo was born in Athens, the son of Nigerian immigrants. He was granted Greek citizenship in 2013, allowing him to travel to the United States and join the Bucks later that year.
“We always felt Greek, but now we have an official stamp and we are happy,” Antetokounmpo told reporters after the ceremony. “Alex and my mom are Greek citizens now.” Antetokounmpo also traveled to Greece in August with his brother Thanassis, carrying the Larry O’Brien NBA championship trophy. He took the trophy to the ancient Acropolis in Athens to celebrate with members of his family.
September 16, 2021 | 8:07 pm EDT Update