Report: Clippers intent on keeping both Blake Griffin, Chris Paul
The Los Angeles Clippers have no interest in moving superstars in advance of Thursday’s NBA trade deadline. In fact, they reportedly already have set plans to retain the services of their two best players for years to come.
In a roundup he compiled of big-name players with expiring contracts, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders reported that neither Blake Griffin nor Chris Paul will be dangled at the deadline. Instead, sources told Kyler the Clippers have already “verbally agreed” to a new contract with Paul that he will sign when he opts out of the final year of his current deal this summer. The new deal will be worth more than $200 million.
Teams have called L.A. about Griffin in recent days, but Kyler reports that the star forward isn’t going anywhere, either.
Like teammate Chris Paul, Griffin’s next deal is all but done. One executive who tried to engage with the Clippers on a Griffin package got absolutely nowhere, saying it was not a conversation the Clippers were willing to have. Griffin has some media ventures in Los Angeles that he’s involved with and has expressed a desire to stay near them. While there was some talk of him heading to Oklahoma City, sources near Griffin said he finds the couple of games he plays there as a Clipper to be draining because of all the family and friends commitments. The idea of playing there full time is not desirable, especially considering how much the Clippers are prepared to pay him to stay in L.A.
Trade rumors have linked Griffin to the Boston Celtics, but a deal doesn’t appear realistic. If anything, the Clippers would be more inclined to make a trade like one we discussed a while back that would allow them to keep their Big Three of Griffin, Paul and DeAndre Jordan in place. They like what they have and plan to do what they can to keep the core of the team together.