Blake Griffin is officially on the mend.
The All-Star power forward underwent surgery for a right big toe injury that prematurely ended his season. There is still no timetable for his full recovery, per the Los Angeles Times‘ Broderick Turner:
Clippers forward Blake Griffin had successful surgery Monday in Charlotte, N.C., to address an injury to the plantar plate of his right big toe, the team announced Monday afternoon.
The Clippers said that there was no official timetable for his return from the procedure done by ankle specialist Robert Anderson, but that it was “reasonable to expect” Griffin on the court sometime during the exhibition season.
That’s about six months from now.
Though the Los Angeles Clippers’ announcement reads like Griffin will be a member of the team once he’s ready to rock, he might not be. He has an early termination option for next year he’s going to exercise, at which time he’ll enter the open market as one of the NBA’s most coveted free agents.
Most expect the Clippers to offer the 28-year-old a five-year max deal that keeps him Los Angeles. In many ways, it seems crazy not to. He can still be a top-20 player when healthy. Problem is, it feels like he’s almost never healthy.
That’s not a scientific justification, it’s just a feeling. Griffin’s injuries are seldom related, but the list of freak accidents and bad luck is extensive. The Clippers and any other team that’s interested in him has to ask themselves whether they want to pay him max money through his 32nd or, in Los Angeles’ case, 33rd birthday. And the answer, for some, is bound to be no.