Los Angeles Clippers: 15 players who defined Lob City

Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images /
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Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers
Photo by Bill Baptist/NBAE via Getty Images /

player. 77. . Power forward. 2010-18. Blake Griffin. 1

He who coined the name “Lob City” deserves to rank first on this list, as Blake Griffin has epitomized the spirit and action of “Lob City” during his time on the Clippers. From high-flying dunks to incredible playoff performances, Griffin had been the core of this era.

Few players attack the rim with as much force as does Griffin, who can rise up from seemingly anywhere on the court and go right to the rim. He was not afraid to take on defenders, dunking on shot blockers from Serge Ibaka to Kendrick Perkins to, perhaps most famously, Timofey Mozgov.

Griffin did not simply save his dunks for games, however. From commercials to music videos, Griffin was happy to ply his trade. He entered and won the 2012 Dunk Contest by dunking over a parked Kia Optima to the music of a choir.

Griffin played on the court with coiled energy that he would unleash in ferocious slams. Off the court, he was more thoughtful and reserved, with a wry sense of humor he liked to exercise by doing comedy in the offseason. That is not to say he was always composed when not playing, as he missed much of the 2016-17 NBA season rehabbing a hand broke punching someone.

More than just a dunker, Griffin continually added to his game throughout his career. He was a skilled passer, often running the offense when Paul was off the court due to rest or injury. He also increased his range steadily out until he was a midrange sharpshooter, and most recently able to hit from 3-point range.

Griffin dominated the 2013-14 NBA season when Paul missed significant time, finishing third in the MVP voting. The next year was his playoff best, as he averaged 25.5 points, 12.7 rebounds and 6.1 assists in leading the Clippers over the San Antonio Spurs and to the brink with the Houston Rockets. Only Oscar Robertson in 1962-63 has hit those averages for a postseason.

Overall, Griffin made five All-Star Games and four All-NBA appearances during the “Lob City” era, one of the faces of the league and of his team. While he never broke through to the Conference Finals, Griffin gave his franchise an identity and propelled them to a place they had never been before: respectability.

Through the injuries, the Donald Sterling fiasco and the internal turmoil, Griffin was excellent on the court. While the Clippers traded him to the Detroit Pistons in 2017-18 to begin a rebuild, that does not lessen his impact for this franchise.

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Griffin is to this day the defining player of all-time for the Clippers. “Lob City” may be over, but that does not mean it should be forgotten.