The Detroit Piston’s earned just their second playoff berth since 2009 this year under new head coach Dwane Casey as the Eastern Conference’s eighth seed. Superstar forward Blake Griffin has carried Detroit the entire season, all while dealing with a knee injury that ultimately kept him from appearing in Game 1 against the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday.
The Pistons were an underdog going into the series, even with the services of Griffin. Without their offensive leader, the game was never close as the Giannis Antetokounmpo-led Bucks cruised to a 121-86 victory to take a 1-0 series lead.
After the game, Griffin told reporters, according to The Detroit News, that if the decision were up to him, he would have played, but that the “situation is complicated.”
According to Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports, Griffin may not see the court for the entire first round.
Following from Yahoo Sports,
After initially missing three games with the sprained knee, Griffin returned April 5 against Oklahoma City to score 45 points, but the knee swelled again and limited his effectiveness two nights later against Charlotte. The Pistons are concerned that could happen in the playoff series against the Bucks, even with the possibility of Griffin having 10 days off heading into Game 3 on Wednesday at Little Caesars Arena.
Griffin will be listed as day to day for the remainder of the series, with a league source calling it a “slim chance” he plays this weekend. There’s no structural damage in the left knee, and it’s unclear whether he’ll need some type of minor procedure this offseason. Griffin and team doctors will decide the best course of action when the season concludes.
This 2018-19 season was one of the more productive years in Griffin’s 10-year career. Griffin appeared in 75 games – the most since his 2013-14 season when played in 80 for the Los Angeles Clippers.
Griffin averaged a career-mark 24.5 points per game this year and shot a career-high 36.2 percent from three on seven attempts per game.