The Clippers witnessed the energy home court advantage can provide in Games 1 and 2 in Memphis where Grizzlies fans were relentless, pulsating. Following practice Friday, Blake Griffin, who will suit up for his first home playoff game Saturday, talked about the Clippers’ crowd.
“Playing in front of the home crowd definitely can give you a little bit more confidence,” Griffin said. “You’re a little bit more relaxed. You know, their [Memphis] fans were loud and they love playing in their home arena and you can kind of feel that energy from their team. Taking them out of that element and also putting some of our guys in our home element, hopefully that gives us a little boost.”
Reggie Evans knows the kind of boost it can provide. He’s the only player on the team who has experienced a Clipper playoff game at Staples Center. He played three games as a visitor in the 2006 first round when he was a member of the Denver Nuggets.
“It was kind of crazy playing here because I’ve never seen the Clippers like that ever,” Evans said. “It was a crazy atmosphere, so I can only imagine what it will be [Saturday].”
In 2006, the Clippers were 5-1 at home during the postseason. They rode a sea of red shirts to five-game victory over the Nuggets in round one and took the Phoenix Suns to a Game 7. This time, the Clippers, who regained home court advantage over the Grizzlies by winning one of their two games in Memphis, have an opportunity to do it again. Again, in front of 20,000 red shirts.
“I know we were ready to get back here in Game 1 and play at Staples,” Randy Foye said. “We know what it’s going to be. Our crowd’s been great all year and we know for Game 3 they’re going to be huge for us.”
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