Blake Griffin was charged with one count of misdemeanor battery on Wednesday, stemming from an incident at a nightclub in Las Vegas in October. Griffin and his Clippers teammates addressed the situation at practice on Thursday, not elaborating on the circumstances but apologizing for the distraction it has caused.
“I’m really not allowed to speak on that,” Griffin said before practice Thursday. “But I’m very confident in the situation so once I can [speak on it], I will.”
Griffin said being charged wasn’t scary, but instead wished it wasn’t hanging over the team.
“I definitely wouldn’t say scary. I feel more badly just for the fact that it’s a distraction,” Griffin said. “I really don’t know how big of a distraction it really is, but it is. So that’s what I feel mostly bad about.”
Clippers point guard Chris Paul also addressed the matter, throwing his support behind his teammate:
“We don’t really talk about it,” Paul said. “He’s a teammate, he’s a brother and we’re always going to be there for him.”
Head coach Doc Rivers downplayed the potential for distraction.
“I love Blake and support Blake, and this will work out,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “Blake was more upset that he thought it was any distraction for the team, and he didn’t want that. I think that’s great that he feels that way. I’m always more concerned with the individual involved. It will play itself out.”
The incident occurred during Clippers training camp, when the team was in Las Vegas for a preseason game. Griffin is scheduled for an arraignment hearing in Las Vegas on December 8. The Clippers play the Phoenix Suns at Staples Center that night.