Clippers trade Blake Griffin months after franchise icon free agency pitch
Blake Griffin showed his commitment to the Los Angeles Clippers by signing a max deal with them during free agency over the summer. And how did they repay him? By trading him to Detroit several months later.
One of the most shocking elements of Monday’s trade that sent Griffin to the Pistons — aside from the lack of rumors preceding it — is that both sides seemed committed to each other. In fact, right after news of the trade came out, many pointed to the free agency pitch the Clippers delivered to Griffin, and how quickly things changed.
A big part of the Clippers’ pitch to convince Griffin to stay with them was that he would be a lifelong Clipper.
The Clippers held their free agent meeting with Griffin at Staples. They lowered the lights in the arena and raised his jersey to the rafters as a choir sang. The PA announcer said: "Tonight, we’re honoring a lifelong Clipper."
— Lee Jenkins (@SI_LeeJenkins) January 29, 2018
They sold him on the idea of him eventually having his jersey retired by the franchise:
— Royce Young (@royceyoung) January 29, 2018
They put him on a special T-shirt with other pioneers, like MLK, Abraham Lincoln and President Obama.
Not even seven months later… pic.twitter.com/qxHXukURuh
— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) January 30, 2018
And now they’ve traded him a half-season later.
Fans often complain about the lack of loyalty from players when they leave in free agency, but there is another side to that. Teams aren’t always the most loyal, either.
In reality, the Clippers should have rebuilt after losing Chris Paul. This was overdue. And it seems like they will be making more moves, too.