Report: Celtics the biggest threat to sign Blake Griffin away from Clippers
Blake Griffin is all but certain to opt out of the final year of his contract with the Clippers this summer, and one prominent reporter indicated this week that the Boston Celtics are a legitimate threat to sign the star forward away from L.A.
In his most recent podcast, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical said Griffin has the Celtics on his radar because of the dedication the fans in Boston show.
“Blake Griffin was there when Paul Piece came in for his last game with the Clippers. He saw how Boston reacted to Paul Pierce and what it means to have been a great player in Boston,” Wojnarowski said, as transcribed by Keith P. Smith of CelticsBlog.com. “It did not go unnoticed with him about how that building loved Paul. They are certainly a threat in this.”
Wojnarowski added that Griffin and Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward are Boston’s primary targets this offseason and that “both players would potentially have interest there.”
Several prominent free agents who spoke with Smith said they have interest in the Celtics because of the environment at the TD Garden.
“No one wants to play in a place where the fans don’t care,” one Eastern Conference veteran reportedly said. “We all know Boston fans can be critical, but that is cool. They expect to win. As a player, you want that pressure. And KG, Paul, all those guys, they tell you that if you win in Boston you become a legend. Everyone wants to be a legend.”
Of course, Griffin would have to leave a lot of money on the table to sign with the Celtics. The Clippers can offer him a max contract of five years, $175 million while the Celtics or any other team could offer a four-year, $130 million deal.
The most likely scenario is that the Clippers keep both Griffin and Chris Paul, but Griffin would probably be more likely to leave L.A. if one rumored scenario involving CP3 plays out. It appears the Clippers are heading into a make-or-break offseason.