Griffin scores 44 points in emotional LA return

Griffin scores 44 points in emotional LA return

Griffin scores 44 points in emotional LA return

In his first game back since he was traded to Detroit, Griffin carried the Pistons to a 109-104 victory over his former team with 44 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals.

Griffin, who had been the Clippers' No. 1 overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, had just signed a five-year, $171 million deal with the team before last season.

Asked if he would ever shake Ballmer's hand, Griffin bristled, saying, "I am not here to answer hypothetical questions".

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Blake Griffin didn't disappoint in his return to Los Angeles.

The starting lineup for the Clippers included two players who came to Los Angeles in the Griffin trade; forward Tobias Harris and guard Avery Bradley.

It was an emotional day for Griffin as he snubbed Clippers owner Steve Ballmer before the game, was greeted with a standing ovation during a first-quarter video tribute, and then had a heated exchange on the floor with former teammate Patrick Beverley as the final horn sounded. "The next time I come it won't be as insane".

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"We're really happy to get the win for Blake", Bullock said.

The 29-year-old forward is averaging a career-high 25.1 points and 8.3 rebounds.

The Pistons held onto their double-digit lead heading into the fourth quarter, only to see LA's bench come alive down the stretch, led by their one-two punch of Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell.

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