Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Blake Griffin has sometimes been too much of a factor in this series for the Grizzlies to handle.
The Grizzlies were able to contain him in Game 1. Griffin hit only seven of his 15 field goal attempts. He threw down three dunks. Other than dunks, Griffin was an anemic 4-of-11 from the field. In the Clippers' fourth-quarter comeback, he dropped two buckets, including one dunk.
In Game 2, Griffin was more effective shooting the ball. He hit nine of his 15 shots from the field. While he had two dunks, Griffin hit an impressive seven of 10 layup attempts. The Grizzlies did manage to force him to turn it over four times. Still, Griffin had an offensive rating of 107 points per 100 possessions.
His game was toned down in Game 3. Griffin went 7-of-13 from the field. He threw down two dunks and hit two of five layups. One of his dunks was an emphatic steal-turned-Sportscenter highlight to put the Clippers ahead by four at the half. The Grizzlies forced him to turn it over five times, an impressive coup.
He had an offensive rating for the game of only 78 points per 100 possessions.
The Grizzlies have succeeded in some ways better than others in defending him. They've managed to force him to turn it over 3.7 times per game. Also, he's been in foul trouble each time, committing five fouls in each games, another area that helps to reduce his formidable presence.
His 53.4 percent field-goal percentage for the series is slightly worse than his regular-season mark (54.9 percent). The Grizzlies could do a little bit better in keeping Griffin from making an impact on offense.
While they've forced the 23-year-old to dunk a little less and take actual shots more often, even those two or three dunks each game could be prevented.
Marreese Speights and Zach Randolph could do better in keeping Griffin in front of them. Speights can't be intimidated by Griffin. Randolph needs to use his strength and athleticism more to counter that of Griffin.
If the Grizzlies can be stronger defending the Clippers' dunking machine, then they'd take away a big-time offensive factor from L.A.