There's no end in sight to the lockout, but on Thursday there was a local pickup game featuring Clippers star Blake Griffin, No. 2 overall draft pick Derrick Williams, Lakers rookie Darius Morris and other NBA players trying to stay busy. Only in an alternate, non-locked-out universe can you see the continuation of Blake Griffin's career. That world is a high-school gym eight miles south of the Clippers' training facility in which Griffin is not allowed to set foot during the NBA lockout. Griffin was at Mira Costa High in Manhattan Beach to play Thursday, and the 2011 NBA Rookie of the Year wasn't just going through the motions. He went head-to-head with Derrick Williams, the recent No. 2 overall pick who is facing an extended wait before ever joining the Minnesota Timberwolves, in NBA-caliber pickup games that also included the Lakers' top draftee, Darius Morris. Griffin, Williams and other pros are spending what could be the never-ending offseason training with Gameshape, a company run by Lamar Odom's personal trainer Robbie Davis and former Lakers massage therapist Marko Yrjovuori. Some NBA players have taken part in weekend games at the Drew League in south Los Angeles or played in the Nike Real Run at Inglewood High, and there are some games at UCLA or Loyola Marymount, but Griffin is diligently building himself up with Gameshape. He's working on his jump shot, for sure, but he's also doing a training regimen specifically geared to address weaknesses in his body structure. This is a big offseason for Griffin, who will always have the long scar over his left knee from that January 2010 surgery but no longer is shackled by strict rehab for it.
Blake Griffin still finding work and play
Orange County Register | Aug 12