The Detroit Pistons and Blake Griffin have agreed to buy out the player’s contract and make him an unrestricted free agent.
What was pretty much obvious since this year started happened today, with the Pistons deciding to move on from the declining veteran. Griffin cost the franchise from Michigan a lot, and in return, he didn’t post performances in accordance with his salary.
The 31-year old was bound to earn $36.6 million this season and $39 million in 2021/21. Since the start of this campaign, Griffin scored 12.2 points, with 5.2 boards and 3.9 assists, all that while shooting just 36.5% from the field.
The Brooklyn Nets are believed to be leaders to sign six-time All-Star Blake Griffin, sources tell me and @JLEdwardsIII. Rival teams with interest are expecting Griffin to choose Nets as a title favorite for chance to win a championship.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 5, 2021
His stats severely dropped over the past two years, mostly due to his physical condition and frequent injuries. The Pistons acquired him via draft on January 29, 2018, sending Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, and Boban Marjanovic to LA Clippers, in exchange for Griffin, Willie Reed, and Brice Johnson.
Along with three players, Detroit also sent a future first-round and a second-rounder pick. From this point of view, that turned out to be one of the worst deals in their recent future. Not only did they give two precious players, from which Harris turned out to be a superstar, but also two picks.
At first, Griffin posted solid numbers, but as time went by his condition became worse, and he slowly began fading. He would play just 18 matches in the previous year, which was when he had two surgeries on his knee.
Throughout career, one of the fiercest dunkers in NBA history, posted 21.7 points per game, with 8.8 boards. Griffin would earn an All-Star invitation on six occasions, win the Rookie of the Year award, five All-NBA selections, and win the NBA Slam Dunk Contest in 2011.
Several teams are contenders to land the strong power forward – Brooklyn Nets, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, and the Portland Trail Blazers. So far, there wasn’t any news about Griffin’s possible destination, but many do believe that he might end up in Brooklyn and add more depth under the rim.
As for the Pistons, they got rid of one very expensive mistake and are now free to continue with their rebuild. The new GM, Troy Waver, has big plans, and in order to accomplish all of them, he needs to have a clear space ahead of him. We could see some moves already during the All-Star weekend because it seems that the Pistons will be very aggressive.