NBA superstar forward Blake Griffin has cited hard work in his 50-point career night on Tuesday.
Griffin carried the Detroit Pistons to an exciting 133-132 win over the visiting Philadelphia Sixers.
The NBA veteran said he is happy that the hard work he put during the offseason has finally paid off.
Griffin said he is also happy with his performance since he was able to silence his critics.
“You know, the past two, three years, all I hear about is how bad I am, and I’ve been hurt,
I’ve had bad games,” Griffin said. “But we talked about it. This summer, being able to work out
for the first time in three summers is huge, you know.
The last three summers I was fighting and working as hard as I could to get healthy to be able to play. “And this summer, I was able to really put time in and work on my game, work on my body,
and I’ve always been a big believer in hard work pays off.”
Griffin’s career-high 50 points were the most by a Pistons player since Rip Hamilton had 51 points on Dec. 27, 2006, against the New York Knicks. According to ESPN Stats & Information, it was the first 40-point, 10-rebound game by a Pistons player since Isiah Thomas on Feb. 8, 1983, when Thomas had 46 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists.
Griffin tied a career high with five 3-pointers and set a career mark with 20 field goals.
His 50 points are the seventh-most in Pistons history. “He’s playing at a high level right now,” Pistons coach Dwane Casey said. “Offensively and defensively, he’s out there talking and making decisions, communicating. He’s playing great.
Of all the great players I’ve worked with, Dirk [Nowitzki], Kyle Lowry, Kevin Garnett,
Shawn Kemp, all those guys, he’s playing at that high level right now. “And he’s just one of those guys that is taking it to another level, leading his team,putting them on his back, being a leader in the timeout. But again, that’s what we expect from Blake because he is that good of a player.”
Fellow 50-point scorer Hamilton took to Twitter to congratulate Griffin.