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Blake Griffin got into foul trouble against the Celtics in Game 3, and it had a significant impact on the outcome. It began in the first quarter when he picked up two quick fouls.

It then came back to bite him in the fourth period when he picked up his fifth foul in the early minutes of the quarter. Steve Nash went with Bruce Brown to close once the 32-year-old veteran got that foul. Looking back, stats may suggest that Griffin could have impacted this game more in regards to rebounding and having better contests on shots with his size in the final moments of Game 3.

Of course Bruce Brown closing any game isn’t a bad sight at all. This is why this team is so deep. He brings defensive intensity, another ball handler and more importantly that energy which has been so contagious all season for the team when it’s coming from him. However, for this particular matchup Griffin’s plus-minus was eye glaring.

In 24 minutes, Blake Griffin had the team-high in plus-minus with +16. He wasn’t having the best offensive game, only shooting 1-for-5 from the field. So what was it that kept his plus-minus so high? Well, when someone like Jayson Tatum goes for 50 the only thing you can do in the process is hope he misses when he’s hot like that. A way you can better those chances is making sure there is as much length on shot contests as possible when he’s out there.

Griffin was clearly making it more difficult for the Celtics forward on the night. Other than that he was setting great screens, rebounding well and overall just setting the tone with his aggressive approach to be physical.