The Clippers had a real problem emerge during their win over the shorthanded Rockets on Saturday, and the last thing they needed was another artificially manufactured distraction.
Blake Griffin left the game in the first quarter and did not return after experiencing back spasms, something that could be as simple as a one-game issue or could linger and cause problems the remainder of the season as it has with Kevin Garnett in Brooklyn.
Either way, it’s a scary injury to the team’s best player that is understandably going to weigh on Doc Rivers. He didn’t need Glen Davis showcasing his trademark immaturity with the team trailing by double-digits in the second quarter, so when that happened, Rivers acted quickly by removing Davis altogether.
Los Angeles Clippers forward Glen “Big Baby” Davis was sent back to the team’s locker room by coach Doc Rivers with 10:21 left in the second quarter and missed the rest of Saturday night’s game for disciplinary issues. …
Davis exchanged words with Rivers and was told to sit down. Clippers assistant coach Alvin Gentry attempted to talk to Davis, but Rivers apparently had seen and heard enough and told team security to escort Davis back to the locker room. …
“He was emotional tonight, and we told him to go sit down,” Rivers said. “I just thought he was a distraction, and when guys are a distraction, I don’t think they should be on the bench. If you’re a distraction for anybody on the bench that should be paying attention to the game, then go sit in the back so our guys can watch the game.”
Griffin’s injury could have contributed to Rivers having the quick trigger here, and he insisted afterward that this hadn’t been something that was building with Davis, and was simply an isolated incident.
Rivers coached Davis in Boston for the first four years of his career, so he knew what he was getting into when adding him to the Clippers as a free agent. He may also know the best way to handle his player when these types of things occur, so it’s very possible that this will ultimately turn out to be nothing more than a single game situation.