By : Tayler Adigun, Sports Reporter (@dangitstayler)
NBA power forward Blake Griffin was traded from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Detroit Pistons following an eight-year stint with the Clippers. Griffin was the No. 1 overall pick in round one of the 2009 NBA draft from the University of Oklahoma. Griffin played for the Clippers for seven seasons and had re-signed a contract last summer, making the trade all the more shocking.
In the trade the Detroit Pistons will get Griffin in exchange for Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley and Boban Marjanovic as well as a first round and second round draft pick, according to a league source. Also this trade caused the Pistons to make a $7 million trade exception, locking Griffin in to a $173 million contract.
Griffin is a five-time NBA All-Star, 2010-2011 rookie of the year, 2011 slam dunk champion, and a three-time All NBA selection. Clippers and Piston fans were quick to take to Twitter to share their thoughts and opinions on the trade, as well as Griffin himself, who stated on Twitter:
“Needed a night to digest and reflect on what happened… from being a #1 pick, to Lob City, to six straight playoff appearances, I am so proud to have been part of the success of the Clippers organization. LA has been my home since I started in the league and I will be forever grateful to the city for embracing me and supporting me. To the fans, you have been awesome every step of the way. Thank you for your years of support. Now I’m ready for the next chapter, helping the Detroit Pistons make a run in the Eastern Conference.”
The news can only be described as an unmitigated surprise to Griffin, who was looking forward to becoming a seemingly permanent figure for the Clippers franchise.
“Blake Griffin had a tremendous impact on this organization and his legacy within the community of Los Angeles will be permanent,” Clippers owner Steve Ballmer said in a news release.
Griffin has spent a lot of his time with the Clippers injured and that is a possible reason why this trade was made. Griffin fell victim to a seemingly unending series of injuries, including a broken toe, back spasms,, a broken hand, a staph infection, a torn left quad tight knee surgery, a sprained MCL and a concussion. He missed 21 games in 2017 and 47 in 2016, according to ESPN.
This is definitely a trade that we will have to wait and see how each team handles and benefits from the trade respectively. Griffin seems to have taken the trade in stride so far, even tweeting high hearted gifs on Twitter.
LeBron James weighed in on the trade, calling it unfortunate, and that seems to be the general consensus. Griffin will be joining Andre Drummond, an overlap that leaves a lot of sports fans skeptical of how the two will vibe. Drummond’s skill set is a poor man’s version of Griffin’s former frontcourt partner DeAndre Jordan. Most pundits believe this team has no real path to contention in the Eastern Conference, even with Griffin. In spite of that, Griffin has succeeded in his early games since joining the Pistons pointing a record of three wins and zero losses. Early returns from the Griffin trade indicate that maybe we’ve underestimated Blake Griffin.