Blake Griffin opens up about Clippers trading him
Blake Griffin likely believed he was going to be a Clipper for life when he signed a five-year, $171 contract with the team last summer, but things changed for him in a hurry. Now that he has had time to digest the trade that sent him to the Pistons, Griffin seems to be embracing the newest chapter of his career.
In a candid interview with Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, Griffin opened up about the Clippers’ surprising decision to trade him. While he insists he is not dwelling on it, there appear to be some hard feelings.
“I haven’t put much thought into it, to be honest. I’ve been so focused on making this transition and [adjusting] to this change that I haven’t put that much thought into it,” he said. “I never want to be in a place where I’m not wanted. Coming here made me realize what a franchise looks like.”
While he may have been trying to pay the Pistons a compliment, that last part seemed like more of an insult to the Clippers than anything. That said, it’s clear Griffin has enjoyed his time in Detroit thus far, even with the team’s playoff hopes evaporating.
“If I wasn’t happy with where I was at or excited to be here, it would take a little bit longer,” Griffin said. “But as soon as I got here to Detroit, the franchise, the way they go about taking care of the players, the way they do everything, is first-class. So, that makes the transition much easier. [Coach] Stan [Van Gundy] and the whole staff has been awesome. I’m not looking back.
Griffin acknowledged that the NBA is a business and that no one should ever feel like the exception, but he hinted on more than one occasion that he was misled by the Clippers.
“You always hear guys say that, ‘Basketball is a business,’ and all that,” Griffin said. “It’s so much different when you have had a relationship with a certain amount of people for so long and been at a place for so long. Someone always promises you this is what we are doing and six months later … It shows people’s true colors. Other than that, at the end of the day, you have to realize it’s a business.”
Regardless of what he says, Griffin has already given us a good indication of how he felt about the trade with the way he acted after his first game against his former team. When a franchise convinces you to sign an extension on the premise that you’re going to retire with them and have your number raised into the rafters, those feelings are natural.