What’s Really Going on With Biedrins
The mystery of what happened to Andris Biedrins’ career continues to perplex Warrior fans and the NBA world. Once a productive and promising center, Biedrins has fallen so far from the realm of relevancy that he is only talked about now for two reasons: how bad he is playing and how ridiculous his contract is. I’ve floated out the idea that the aliens from Space Jam secretly came down a few years ago and stole his talent but in theory, they should have given that back by now.
As I was watching the Lakers/Clippers game last night on ESPN, a thought about what might have happened started to creep into my thoughts. That thought grew into a hypothesis which then led me to hopping on the Internet to do some research to confirm what I had just pondered. It’s a complicated situation, but I think I have figured out what happened to Biedrins over the past couple of seasons.
Biedrins’ last productive season came during the 2008-2009 season where he averaged 11.9 PPG and 11.2 RPG while shooting 57% from the field (and a whopping 55% at the FT line!). Griffin was not in the league then. In the three seasons proceeding the 08-09 campaign, he averaged 5 PPG, 5 PPG and is currently in the MVP discussion at 1.8 PPG. Griffin has been in the league in those three seasons he has struggled.
“But Ben, that’s just coincidence. He’s not the reason Biedrins is struggling!” (Yeah, that’s right. I just quoted your thoughts.) To the naked eye, that may be true, but consider the following.
Since Griffin came into the league, he seems to be on a mission to dunk on everyone and anyone (and anything if you count KIA motor vehicles). Last year his main victim was former Knick Timofey Mozgov. Earlier this season, he completely destroyed Kendrick Perkins and last night, he stole Pau Gasol’s manhood not once, but twice in the same game (those of you arguing that both of those dunks were fouls are probably Laker fans or a leader of an “Occupy” movement that is trying to ban dunking from basketball). As you can see, Griffin appears to be instituting a Gregg Williams-type bounty on centers. Only he’s not trying to decapitate them – he’s trying to dunk on them and take their lunch money.
Griffin has not yet dunked on Biedrins but just Griffin’s presence has clearly affected his game.
The example I thought of that makes this true is the movie “Hancock” starring Will Smith and Charlize Theron. For those of you who haven’t seen the movie, Will Smith’s character, Hancock, is a supernatural being who for some reason can fly, has superhuman strength and appears to be invincible (not invisible, invincible – I can’t tell you how many times I confused the two growing up). He then meets Charlize Theron’s character and her husband where Hancock discovers that Theron’s character is also superhuman and was his former lover. They had to be separated due to the fact that when they are close together, they become significantly weaker and extremely vulnerable.
There you have it, Biedrins is the Hancock to Griffin’s Charlize Theron (that’s a weird sentence). Since Griffin came into the league, Biedrins’ game took a hit and he has never recovered. Since they are in the same league, Biedrins’ basketball “powers” have greatly diminished resulting in his lack of production. Of course this approach is not full proof since Griffin’s game has not become weak by any means, currently averaging a double-double with 21 PPG and 10.8 RPG. Well, aside from the fact that he has no post moves, isn’t a great defender and dominates the game purely on his athleticism (for now). Perhaps Griffin being Biedrins’ Kryptonite makes more sense?
Whatever the case may be, at least, for now, we have a temporary explanation for what’s happened to the big man from Latvia.
It’s better than just thinking he isn’t good at basketball anymore, right?
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