A season of firsts continued today for the Clippers – Chris Paul and Blake Griffin were both named to All-NBA teams.
Paul, an All-NBA First Team selection for the second time in his career, paced the league in steals (2.53 spg) and finished third in assists (9.1 apg), adding 19.8 ppg and 3.5 rpg. He posted 23 double-doubles, tying for 16th overall. Paul this season became only the second player (Tim Hardaway, 1990-91) in NBA history to average at least 19.0 points, 9.0 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 2.0 steals.
Paul — who finished third in MVP voting, behind LeBron James and Kevin Durant — joined those two, Dwight Howard and Kobe Bryant on the first team, although he finished with the fewest first team votes (74) of the five.
After winning Rookie of the Year award last season but being left off of any of the three All-NBA teams, Griffin was selected to the second team, along with Kevin Love, Andrew Bynum, Russell Westbrook and Tony Parker. His selection may come as a slight surprise to some, considering that he finished ahead of more established “stars” Carmelo Anthony and Dirk Nowitzki, the third team forwards.
In five short months, Paul and Griffin have made significant improvements to a franchise record book that was laughably bereft of real, season-long honors.
Paul is only the franchise’s second first team selection, and its first since it moved to Los Angeles in 1984. The only other was Bob McAdoo, in 1975. Also, after sending two starters to the All-Star game for the first time in franchise history, this marks the first time they have placed two players on any of the three All-NBA teams in any single year.