Blake Griffin has made a lot of money during his NBA career with the LA Clippers and Detroit Pistons. The former No. 1 overall pick has carved out a Hall of Fame career since entering the league back in 2009.
With the Clippers and Pistons, Griffin has racked up career averages of 21.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 4.4 assists. He’s made six All-Star teams and five All-NBA squads.
However, Griffin has never played in the NBA Finals, let alone a conference final.
That’s why Blake Griffin is sacrificing $13.3 million for a chance to win his first NBA title this season.
Blake Griffin gave back $13.3 million in his buyout with the Pistons
Blake Griffin and the Pistons agreed to a buyout on Friday. The former high-flyer gave back $13.3 million to Detroit and is now an unrestricted free agent.
The 2010-11 Rookie of the Year, Griffin has really struggled since the 2018-19 season ended. He underwent knee surgery in the summer of 2019 and another procedure during the 2019-20 season.
Whatever ailment Griffin had addressed hasn’t helped, as the former Clippers superstar averaged 15.5 points and 4.7 rebounds in the 18 games he played in 2019-20 and put up 12.3 points on 36.5% shooting from the field this season before getting bought out by Detroit.
Since the Pistons are rebuilding, it made perfect sense for Griffin and the franchise to part ways. Detroit tried to find a trade partner for the power forward, but no team in the NBA would give up assets to acquire Griffin and his monster contract.
$13.3 million is a lot of money to give up, but Blake Griffin was desperate to get out of Detroit. After clearing waivers on Sunday, the former Oklahoma Sooner will become a free agent and is expected to reunite with DeAndre Jordan.
Blake Griffin will likely sign with the Nets
Blake Griffin is widely expected to sign with the Brooklyn Nets once he clears waivers. Griffin’s former Clippers teammate, DeAndre Jordan, is on the Nets.
If Brooklyn signs Griffin, head coach Steve Nash will have a starting lineup of James Harden, Kyrie Irving, Griffin, Kevin Durant, and Jordan. While Griffin is no longer an All-Star in the NBA, he can still help the Nets win a championship with his rebounding and playmaking skills.
The Nets went 24-13 during the first half of the 2020-21 season. They are in second place in the Eastern Conference standings and only a half-game back of the Philadelphia 76ers for first place. Brooklyn shouldn’t count on Griffin to turn back the clock and be a difference-maker for them since his body is just about finished.
However, Blake Griffin still draws double teams in the post and can shoot the 3-ball fairly well. Since the Nets have three superstars in Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving, Griffin won’t have to carry the weight of the world on his shoulders in Brooklyn.
A championship would guarantee a Hall of Fame induction for the Oklahoma native
If Blake Griffin wins a championship with the Nets, he will be a first-ballot Hall of Famer one day. A title is the only thing missing from Griffin’s NBA résumé.
People forget that Griffin was a monster with the Clippers during his prime. He averaged 21.6 points and 9.3 rebounds with LAC in 504 games and dunked on pretty much every big man in the NBA.
While Clippers fans hope that Kawhi Leonard and Paul George can lead LAC to a title this season, they will certainly get emotional watching Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan reunite on the Nets.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference.