The Los Angeles Clippers knew that this NBA offseason could end up being a tough one for the franchise. With Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and J.J. Redick all testing the free agency market, Doc Rivers was put in a rough situation. Now, things are moving quickly and the Clippers have decisions to make.
Chris Paul was traded to the Houston Rockets in a deal that brought back a handful of players and a first-round pick. It was a move that took the NBA by surprise. Paul had decided to leave the Clippers and instead of opting out, he opted into his deal so the Clippers could get something in return from the Rockets.
Next up for the Clippers will be figuring out what Griffin’s future with the franchise will be. According to a report from Brad Turner of the L.A. Times, the Clippers believe that trading Paul has paved the way for Griffin to be re-signed.
Griffin is going to receive a lot of interest when free agency opens up on July 1. He is expected to have interest from teams like the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat, but the Clippers seem to be the front-runner to re-sign him when everything is said and done.
Last season with the Clippers, Griffin ended up averaging 21.6 points per game to go along with 8.1 rebounds. He shot 49.3 percent from the field overall and knocked down 76.0 percent of his free throws. L.A. cannot afford to lose Griffin if they want to remain competitive in the Western Conference.
It will be interesting to see what ends up happening with Griffin in free agency. L.A. will do everything in their power to get Griffin locked up as quickly as possible. Should Griffin choose to sign elsewhere, the Clippers could try to facilitate a sign-and-trade to get a piece or two out of the deal.
Some analysts have suggested that the Clippers could try to sign-and-trade Griffin to the Indiana Pacers in a deal that would bring Paul George to Los Angeles. George has been vocal about his desire to return to L.A. and play for the Lakers. Perhaps the Clippers could convince him to re-sign following the upcoming season since he would already be in Los Angeles.
All of that being said, Griffin has enjoyed his tenure with the Clippers. While he has been successful in Los Angeles, seeing Paul walk to Houston could impact Griffin’s decision. L.A. may be the front-runner right now, but things could change very quickly.
Do you think Blake Griffin will end up re-signing with the Los Angeles Clippers? If not, where do you think he will sign? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!
[Featured Image by Jae C. Hong/AP Images]