Information in this article may not be canonical to the storyline of the games or any other Sonic continuity.
The Gryphon was a beast that was native to the Nameless Zone. It terrorized the centaur village of Portstable. When it attempted to eat Miles "Tails" Prower, it was defeated (not expecting Tails to fly, it flew into the ground and was knocked out). The centaurs hailed Tails as a hero.. Not only is the pronunciation similar but it apparently looks very similar to the mythological Griffin.
- Griffin at Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia