ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski broke news earlier today, reporting that the Los Angeles Clippers and Detroit Pistons reached a trade deal that involves Blake Griffin heading to the Motor City. Griffin isn’t alone, however, as Brice Johnson and Willie Reed will join him in Detroit. In return, the Clippers will receive Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic, and a first- and second-round draft pick.
The Clippers have agreed to a deal to send Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 29, 2018
With a current record of 25-24, the Clippers have obviously decided to rebuild their entire team, but why wait until the off-season to get started? According to ESPN sources, the protections on Detroit’s 2018 first-round pick include spots 1-4 in 2018, 2019 and 2020, while being unprotected in 2021. The agreement of first- and second-round draft picks the Pistons are giving to the Clippers do not currently have a year attached to them. Los Angeles is reportedly still looking to deal Lou Williams and DeAndre Jordan in exchange for young players and draft picks. Sitting 14.5 games behind Golden State in the Western Conference, and with the season not close to being finished, the Clippers will look to begin this “complete” rebuild, but they will likely still strive for a playoff spot this season.
Being the big name in the conversation, Griffin is the blockbuster piece of the trade, especially given that he just signed a new five-year, $171 million deal with the Clippers. The deal did not include a no-trade clause. According to ESPN.com, Griffin is averaging 22.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game this season. On his career, Griffin averages 21.6 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game. Injuries have seemed to plague Griffin throughout his career, however.