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Blake Griffin puts Phoenix No. 2 on Mt. Rushmore of top NBA cities

Los Angeles Clippers' Blake Griffin (32) protects the basketball as he drives to the basket, while Phoenix Suns' P.J. Tucker (17) arrives to defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, April 14, 2015, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

New York City, Boston and Los Angeles: Those are not only large, diverse metropolitan areas but also basketball-loving towns.

Phoenix may not be widely considered on par as an NBA city, but Clippers forward Blake Griffin tends to disagree.

Tasked with putting together a Mt. Rushmore of the best NBA cities for the June 19 episode of the Pardon My Take podcast, he placed the Suns’ hometown just behind New York City.

“Good time, great weather always,” Griffin told hosts Dan Katz and PFT Commenter. “A young town; you got Scottsdale, you got Phoenix. It’s all right there.”

Griffin listed New York City and Boston in his top four, but he also included Toronto at No. 3 as a darkhorse along with Phoenix.

It wasn’t exactly clear how Griffin put together his “best NBA city” Mt. Rushmore. He said a lot of it had to do with the culture. The basketball part held some weight as well.

By the way, did we mention Griffin can be a free agent should he opt out of his current deal with the Clippers?

The All-Star forward’s podcast mates pointed out that the Suns do have a bit of cap space to work with.

“I don’t know about that, I haven’t been paying attention,” Griffin said.

Who can say whether he would ever consider suiting up for the Suns?

Phoenix fans can at the least know that Griffin appreciates the city from a cultural perspective.

“I like to get in there a little early and stake my claim for the Mt. Rushmore and then when they blow up, it’s like hey, I was here from the beginning,” he added of picking Phoenix as a surprise member of his top NBA cities.

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