Detroit star Pistons Blake Griffin will likely miss the entire first-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks due to a left knee injury, sources at Yahoo Sports said.
Griffin fought the injury in the last few weeks, recovering the second-to-last race of the Pistons against Memphis and losing the season finale against New York, the games the Pistons had to win – and they did – to qualify for the locate last playoff.
Without the Griffins, the Pistons did not match the Bucks head-to-head in race 1 on Sunday night, losing 121-86 at the Fiserv Forum.
After initially losing three games with a dislocated knee, Griffin returned on April 5 to Oklahoma City to score 45 points, but his knee swelled again and limited his effectiveness two nights later against Charlotte. The Pistons are worried that it could happen in the playoff series against the Bucks, even with the possibility that Griffin has 10 days rest in Game 3 on Wednesday at the Little Caesars Arena.
Griffin will be listed as day-to-day for the rest of the series, with a league source calling it a "subtle opportunity" that plays this weekend. There is no structural damage to the left knee, and it is not clear if he will need some kind of secondary procedure in the offseason. Griffin and the team's doctors will decide the best line of action at the end of the season.
Griffin was the catalyst for the Pistons who made the playoffs only for the second time in the last decade, and remained in good health until this injury. Griffin has played 75 games in his first full season in Detroit – his most since 2013-14 – and the organization wants to preserve his long-term health because he is under contract until 2021-22. It was acquired in a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers in January 2018.
Griffin had a one-year career this season while doing his sixth All-Star team, averaging 24.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists while turning 36.2 percent from the 3-point range.
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