Blake Griffin is no longer a Los Angeles Clipper.
According to multiple reports, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Detroit Pistons have agreed on a deal to send forward Blake Griffin to the Motor City in exchange for multiple players and draft picks.
Details on the trade are still coming in, but according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Clippers are sending Griffin, Brice Johnson and Willie Reed to the Pistons in exchange for Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic, a 2018 first-round pick and a 2019 second-round pick.
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
Griffin re-signed with the Clippers this past offseason on a five-year, $171 million deal, that would keep him in Los Angeles for the peak of his career. The 28-year-old did not have a no-trade clause in the deal, and is now on his way out of town.
Many will point to the new Clippers special consultant Jerry West as the architect of this trade, since West has been behind multiple re-builds and trades over the course of his career with the Lakers, Grizzlies, and Golden State Warriors.
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“Blake is one of the best players ever to wear a Clippers jersey. We want to express our gratitude and respect for everything he has done for this team and the City of Los Angeles. This was a very difficult decision, but we ultimately felt it was appropriate for the franchise,” said Lawrence Frank, President of Basketball Operations. “We would also like to thank Brice and Willie for their contributions to our organization.”
However, West, head coach Doc Rivers and Clippers' owner Steve Ballmer were all part of a meeting last summer with Griffin at Staples Center, as they created a museum of his career with the Clippers, courting him to stay in LA.
That meeting ended with Griffin saying, "I want my legacy to be a Clipper."
“Blake Griffin had a tremendous impact on this organization and his legacy within the community of Los Angeles will be permanent. It was a pleasure getting to know and cheer for Blake. I wish him, as well as Brice and Willie, the best of luck. While change is hard, my confidence in our front office, led by Lawrence Frank and Michael Winger, along with the sage counsel of Jerry West, has never been higher. I believe today, more than ever, in our ultimate goal of winning an NBA Championship,” said Steve Ballmer, Chairman of the L.A. Clippers.
Griffin, was the former No. 1 pick of the Clippers in the 2009 NBA Draft, spent eight seasons with the Clippers. He holds career averages of 21.6 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.2 assists in 35.1 minutes in 504 games (all starts). The 2011 NBA Rookie of the Year, he was selected to five NBA All-Star games. He ranks second in franchise history in scoring (10,863 points, 21.6 ppg).
Griffin's career has been marred by injuries, but this move is still surprising as Griffin was the face of the franchise and a stalwart in Hollywood, appearing in movies, television and commercials.
The Clippers are only one game out of the 8th seed in the Western Conference.
The Clippers will travel to Detroit to play the Piston on Feb. 9.