The Los Angeles Clippers trading Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons was an unlikely call. With the recent NBA trade rumors surrounding Clippers’ center DeAndre Jordan, all eyes were waiting for news that he had been dealt. Blake Griffin being dealt first comes across as a shock.
Blake Griffin was expected to be in for the long haul. It was at least the case last offseason after Griffin signed a five-year deal, worth $173 million to remain (courtesy of Sports Illustrated) with the Clippers. Griffin’s long-term status with the Clippers has now changed due to a report blockbuster trade involving the five-time all-star.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that the Los Angeles Clippers have agreed to trade Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons.
Blake Griffin, 28, has played his entire eight-year career with the Clippers. Griffin now goes to a Detroit Pistons’ team that seems intent on contending for a playoff spot.
In order to acquire Blake Griffin from the Clippers, the Pistons sent Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley and Boban Marjanovic in return. The Pistons also relinquished a protected first round pick, along with a second-rounder to the Clippers.
The Clippers remain in the for one of the final playoff spots in the Western Conference despite trading Blake Griffin. However, by moving Griffin, the Clippers will have some salary cap relief in the offseason.
The Los Angeles Clippers can join the small group of NBA teams with salary cap space for a large free agency class. For now, the trade of Blake Griffin appears to be the next phase of an ongoing rebuilding project.
The Clippers and Pistons have agreed on a deal to trade Blake Griffin for Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic, a first-round and a second-round draft pick, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 29, 2018
As a result of the Blake Griffin trade, the Los Angeles Clippers could have three first round draft picks next season.
There are lottery protections on the first-rounder the Clippers received from the Pistons. If the pick does not fall into the top four selections it goes to the Clippers. The Clippers’ number of draft picks can rise to four if they were to trade DeAndre Jordan before the NBA trade deadline.
Trading DeAndre Jordan is what most people have anticipated for months. Jordan’s trade value may have been revealed with the trade of Blake Griffin to the Pistons.
As for the Detroit Pistons, dealing for Blake Griffin means that they may have a good chance at challenging the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics in the East. The Pistons now boast a terrific frontcourt, featuring Blake Griffin and Andre Drummond.
One of the Pistons’ weaknesses was the lack of a go-to scorer. The addition of Blake Griffin solidifies that problem. Griffin also helps in terms of overall playmaking for the Pistons.
Questions regarding Blake Griffin’s health will always be an issue, however. This is where the gamble begins.
A healthy Blake Griffin is a top 10 NBA star capable of leading the Detroit Pistons to the postseason. If he were to suffer from a lingering injury, the Pistons could be lottery-bound. Having Griffin is worth the risk.
The Los Angeles Clippers also sent Willie Reed to the Detroit Pistons.
On the surface, the Pistons win the trade because they received Blake Griffin, who is by far the best player in the deal. Moving Griffin’s maximum contract off of their books could be considered as a win for the Clippers.
Gone is Blake Griffin and his contract. Avery Bradley is a free agent after the end of the season. The contract of Tobias Harris is a descending deal, which expires after next season.
Because the Detroit Pistons were able to trade for Blake Griffin, the Cleveland Cavaliers are the biggest losers. The Cavaliers did not have the trade chips in Blake Griffin, however, the asking price for DeAndre Jordan may have risen.
LeBron James wants the Cavaliers’ front office to acquire some help for a postseason run. The biggest piece that the Cavaliers have to offer is the Brooklyn Nets’ first-round pick. According to Bleacher Report, the Cavaliers want DeAndre Jordan.
The one thing the Cavaliers will not submit in a trade for Jordan is the Nets’ draft choice. With the Detroit Pistons acquisition of Blake Griffin, they draw closer to the pack. It could force the Cavaliers to include the pick for DeAndre Jordan.
Blake Griffin is on the move from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Detroit Pistons in a blockbuster NBA trade. With Griffin in the fold, the Pistons intend on making a run for the playoffs. There will be other moves to follow. Blake Griffin being dealt is perhaps going to be the most shocking move leading up to the NBA trade deadline.