Blake Griffin Breaks Hand After Punching Clippers Employee In The Face
Clippers star Blake Griffin is now out at least a month after punching a team employee and breaking his hand.The incident was first reported on Monday night by ESPN's Marc Stein, who tweeted that Griffin had broken his hand in an "undisclosed team-related incident," the most obvious euphemism for "fight:"
It was later revealed in an L.A. Times report that on Saturday night in Toronto, some teasing got out of hand between Griffin and Clippers equipment manager Matias Testi, resulting in Griffin "repeatedly" punching Testi in the face. Griffin wound up fracturing the fourth metacarpal (finger bone) of his right hand, which could sideline him for 4 to 6 weeks.
Although Toronto police responded to the scene after the fight, both Griffin and Testi declined to file a police report, saying they did not want to escalate the situation. Media relations officer Jenifferjit Sidhu of the Toronto Police Service told the Times, "We have no victim, we have no report." According to TMZ, the fight occurred outside of the restaurant Sotto Sotto after both Griffin and Testi had been drinking in the hours leading up to the fight. Clippers head coach and President of Basketball Operations Doc Rivers said he did not believe alcohol was a factor.
After reports began trickling out about the fight, Griffin apologized for "creating a distraction" on Twitter:
Although police are not investigating the incident, ESPN reports that both the NBA the players union are both investigating the incident, potentially leading to a fine and/or a suspension after he returns from his injury.
Despite the incident, both Griffin and Testi are reportedly good friends, with the two of them frequently posting pictures with each other on social media:
Griffin was already out with an injury he suffered during the Christmas Day game, but the team was hoping he could return to the court in the coming days. Despite his absence, they have played well without him—they now hope to continue to do so with this new injury.
"We're all like family. That's how we're going to deal with this, like family," point guard Chris Paul told the media after Tuesday's win over the Indiana Pacers. "At the end of the day, we control what we can control. We still have a job to do."