Culver City Observer -

By Mitch Chortkoff
Sports Editor 

Clippers' Bold Move May Really Work

Clippers Trade Blake Griffin


February 2, 2018

I expected the fan reaction after the Clippers traded Blake Griffin the other day. The people weren’t happy. They didn’t want to lose a popular player and big-time scorer.

But after being around the NBA for nearly 50 years I’ve learned a lot about surprising trades. Factoring in everything I often realize that management had a good plan.

This could really work. And let me tell you why.

Griffin has missed 99 games in the last four years with injuries, as players get older and injuries occur more often a players’ market value will decrease.

I’m not saying trade all of them but I recognize the Clippers are set up to make a trade that can keep them in playoff contention.

They’re getting Tobias Harris in this trade. He’s been in the NBA for seven years and averages 18 points per game. They already have Lou Williams, who they acquired earlier this season and he’s scored at least 20 points in 22 straight games. He’s even had one of 50.

With those two guys producing more points than Griffin the Clippers should remain a team with playoff hopes. And in this trade the Clippers get four more players which will improve their depth.

Having said that I haven’t ignored the fact that Griffin was an elite player earning a huge salary. Fans aren’t used to management discarding someone so popular.

But let me remind you that the NBA is a business and so are their teams.

Then factor in Jerry West, who is regarded as the best evaluator of NBA talent in history.

He left the champion Golden State Warriors and hoped to go back to the Lakers where he was a great player and general manager. But the Lakers had just hired Magic Johnson to run the basketball operation.

West lives in Los Angeles and when the Clippers asked if he’s be interested he saw this opportunity as a perfect fit.

Working with other Clippers management guys and being brought in as a consultant he could set the Clippers in motion for a shakeup.

Now let’s look at the Detroit Pistons.

They’re in a new arena and they haven’t been drawing well. The team is struggling and currently is far from being a playoff contender. Now with Griffin there’s hope for Piston fans. Griffin will team with Andre Drummond so the team has two outstanding big men.

To learn more I’m going to Staples Center Saturday to watch the Clippers play the Chicago Bulls.

I think this trade will energize the Clippers and the Pistons. I hope I’m right.


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