Blake Griffin could be on the move.
Obviously this would be an enormous shift for the Clippers. After trading Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets over the summer, LA went all-in on Griffin as the face of the franchise. The Clippers signed him to a five-year, $171 million deal in late June and intended to rebuild around the 28-year-old. Just a few months later, it appears they’re willing to move on.
The Clippers are currently one game out of a playoff spot in the Western Conference and their roster is not well constructed. They have an odd mix of veterans who aren’t stars and young players who haven’t shown potential.
Meanwhile, the Pistons are three games out of a playoff spot in the East and have several young players who could help Los Angeles begin to rebuild.
While the Pistons are reportedly willing to part with Avery Bradley, a guy like Tobias Harris or young players like LA-native Stanley Johnson, Luke Kennard and Henry Ellenson could be added to any deal to sweeten things for the Clippers. Obviously that couldn’t all be going from Detroit to LA, for a five-time All-Star, but some combination of those guys could move things along.
Griffin has been declining over the past few years and has only played 80 games in a season twice. He missed 47 games due to injury in 2015-16 and 21 games in 2016-17. This season he’s averaging 22.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and a career-best 5.4 assists in 34.5 minutes per game. But his PER has dropped to a career-low 20.70 and his true shooting percentage (55.3) is down from last year.
Still, the Pistons need an impact player who could add some juice to their franchise. Griffin would do that, though his contract is a monster.
It feels like we’re a long way from a deal actually getting done, but this report is fascinating to say the least.
UPDATE: Whoops, never mind. The deal is done.