Blake Griffin and I were discussing the statue that one day will be standing outside Staples Center.

As we talked, we struggled initially to make a connection.

Bless his big heart, it wasn't until he realized we were talking about him rather than a Page 2 statue that should already be there that we really started to understand each other.

A lot can go wrong, and of course I will write about that.

But there's also no reason why Griffin can't go down as the all-time original Clipper if he continues to remain with the team and bring the franchise the success it's never enjoyed before.

He's already been instrumental in leading the Clippers to their first division title. He's also advanced in his thinking. Rather than hang a banner in Staples to celebrate a division title, he said, the organization should be thinking about loftier goals.

OK, so he's 24, a dreamer, but I'll let you be the one to go chest to chest with him and tell him the Clippers' success defies even the most youthful imagination.

I like Griffin. How can you not if you have watched any of his commercials? The deadpan routine is no act. He might be the funniest athlete in town.

Asked to say a few words to a departing P.R. guy for the Clippers, whom he really liked, Griffin took the microphone and asked friends and family if someone could point out the guy he was supposed to be honoring.

Now as good as Griffin already is as a basketball player, he's going to have to be better to be statue-worthy. He's proved he can do that, his free-throw shooting markedly better as well as his outside shooting.

But that's also why I was critical of him a few days ago, suggesting he might want to work on his maturity as well. I'm 62, and told that all the time, so I know it's a work in progress.

"You have every right to be critical," Griffin said. "I'm probably more critical of myself than you ever will be."