With the All-Star break over, teams in both conferences have a big couple months ahead. The fate of some of those clubs may come down to the performance of a single contributor. We’ll take a look at four of those players (or coaches!) in each conference. First up, the Eastern Conference.1. Blake Griffin – Detroit Pistons:Make no mistake about it, when Stan Van Gundy traded for Griffin it was playoffs or bust for Detroit. And despite a promising 4-0 start, the Pistons are currently 5-3 with their new superstar in the fold. As of right now, the Pistons are a game and a half back of Miami for the last spot in the Eastern Conference. Whether they catch the Heat will have everything to do with Griffin — which is good considering the early signs.The early returns on Griffin may not look too great on the surface. He’s shooting just 40.6 percent from the field and only 29.4 percent from beyond the arc. Both those marks are drastically lower than Griffin’s season totals with the Clippers. Yet where it really counts — his overall impact — Griffin is hitting all the right marks. Overall, Detroit is just over eight points better… Read full this story
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