In the 3rd trade of this 2017-2018 NBA season, the Los Angeles Clippers have traded superstar Power-Forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons. It feels like this could be the first move of a potentially-busy NBA trade deadline. This could’ve been a great move for both teams however I think the Pistons gave up way too much. The complete details are as shown below:
Clippers Receive: Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Boban Marjonovich, a protected 1st-round pick, and a 2nd-round pick.
Pistons Receive: Blake Griffin, Brice Johnson, Willie Green.
I think anyone with any basketball logic knows this trade is an awful deal for the Pistons. I mean c’mon! Boban is the core of that team! No but in all seriousness, I think Detroit overpaid for Griffin. They moved a top-3 wing defender in the entire league, AND an all-around Small Forward averaging 18-5-2 per game for yet another great big man whose career has been held back and riddled with injuries since day one. A tale as old as time.
Moving Avery Bradley right after you acquired him from Boston for practically nothing (a Morris brother) is the last thing the Pistons should have done. I feel as if Bradley is one of the most underrated players in the entire league. He’s never going to drop 20 a night, but I guarantee if you took a survey of all the Shooting Guards in the NBA, and asked them; “Who is the best defensive 2-Guard in the league?”, at least 1/3 would say Bradley. Harris isn’t a slouch either! He’s averaging career highs in scoring and 3-point percentage (18.1 PPG, .409%). The Pistons should have traded Bradley OR Harris, but definitely not both.
Sneakily, I think Blake Griffin’s big, shiny, new contract could be the worst part of this deal for Detroit. During this past off-season, the Clippers gave Blake a 5 year, $171,174,820 contract extension. This could easily come back to haunt the Pistons because in 2022, are they really going to want to pay a 33-year-old, injury prone big man $38,957,028?! No way.
If they are rebuilding like it looks like they are, this transaction is going to pay off well for the Clippers. Acquiring two young players like Bradley and Harris will be valuable for starting- as the Sixers have dubbed it – “The Process”. I think the next and already rumored moves they should make are scrapping the rest of their assets for more picks and young players. DeAndre Jordan has seemingly been on the trade block for 2 years and I think now is when the move finally gets done. Also, we could see All-Star-game-snub Lou Williams on the move out of L.A.
If anything is clear from this trade it’s this: the Clippers are no longer exciting. The once called “Lob-City” Clippers have ultimately failed and L.A. is moving on for the future. A theory is that L.A. is making these moves to clear cap and acquire youth to prepare for an off-season pitch to LeBron James. As for the Pistons, they started super-hot but have crashed down to Earth as the season has progressed. Hopefully this move can catapult them back toward the top of the East, however, I highly doubt it.