NBA Rumors: Blake Griffin & Derrick Rose Could Be Traded To Bulls For Lauri Markkanen & Otto Porter Jr

Josh Okogie #20 of the Minnesota Timberwolves defends against Blake Griffin #23 of the Detroit Pistons during the first quarter of the season opening game at Target Center on December 23, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
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The Detroit Pistons are once again off to a disappointing start, losing six of their first seven games in the 2020-21 NBA season. If they fail to bounce back, there’s a strong possibility that the Pistons will consider trading Blake Griffin and Derrick Rose and undergoing a full-scale rebuild. Both veterans may no longer be in their prime, but once they become officially available on the trading block, several teams that want to become more competitive are expected to express a strong interest in adding them to their roster.

One of the potential trade partners for the Pistons in the deal involving Griffin and Rose is the Chicago Bulls. According to Lee Tran of Fadeaway World, the Bulls may consider sending a package that includes Lauri Markkanen and Otto Porter Jr. to the Pistons in exchange for Griffin and Rose. Though it would cost them a young and promising big man in Markkanen, Tran believes that the proposed trade would make a lot of sense for the Bulls, as it would give them two quality veterans that could help Zach LaVine bring the team back to the playoffs.

“This trade is a high-risk, high reward trade. The Bulls would trade away a promising prospect, but there are some concerns about Markkanen as well. Markkanen hasn’t played more than 60 games a season since his rookie year, and the Bulls would also have to give him a big contract as he is a restricted free agent after the season. While Rose and Griffin are also injury prone, they offer a higher ceiling for the team, as compared to just Markkanen.”

Jordan McLaughlin #6 of the Minnesota Timberwolves splits the defense of Derrick Rose #25 and Blake Griffin #23 of the Detroit Pistons during the first half at Little Caesars Arena on November 11, 2019 in Detroit, Michigan.
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Trading for Griffin and Rose is indeed a huge gamble for Chicago. Both veterans are already on the downsides of their careers and have a scary injury history. Also, while Rose is already in the final year of his contract, Griffin is still owed a huge amount of money through the 2021-22 NBA season.

However, when healthy, Griffin and Rose would make the Bulls a more competitive team in the Eastern Conference this year. Both players are battle-tested in the playoffs and well-respected in the locker room. Griffin would give the Bulls a floor-spacing big man who could immediately replace Markkanen at the starting power forward position, while Rose could serve as LaVine’s backcourt partner or as the team’s Sixth Man.

Meanwhile, if the deal becomes a reality, it would also greatly benefit the Pistons. Aside from helping them open up a huge chunk of salary cap space, they would also be receiving a talented big man in Markkanen who would join their young core of Killian Hayes, Josh Jackson, Jerami Grant, and Sekou Doumbouya.