Detroit Pistons get Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin in blockbuster deal
By NOAH TRISTER
AP Sports Writer
The Detroit Pistons shook up their struggling roster in dramatic fashion, acquiring star forward Blake Griffin in a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Pistons announced the deal early this morning. Detroit sent forward Tobias Harris, guard Avery Bradley and center Boban Marjanovic to Los Angeles, with the Clippers also receiving draft picks. Detroit also acquired forward Brice Johnson and center Willie Reed in the deal.
“We are serious about winning, and this is a major move to improve our team,” Pistons owner Tom Gores said in a statement. “Blake Griffin is one of the NBA’s elite players, and when you get an opportunity to add that kind of talent, you take it.”
Griffin is averaging 22.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists in 33 games this season, but the Clippers have been plagued by injuries and are ninth in the Western Conference standings. Detroit is scuffling as well. The Pistons have lost eight straight heading into tonight’s game against Cleveland.
The 28-year-old Griffin has been the face of the Clippers, and last July, he agreed to a $171 million, five-year deal, ending a brief flirtation with free agency. He told his teammates, coach Doc Rivers and owner Steve Ballmer, “I want my legacy to be a Clipper.”
The deal didn’t include a no-trade clause.
The addition of Griffin gives Detroit’s frontcourt another standout alongside Andre Drummond, but it also represents a clear change in course from the roster the Pistons had assembled. Detroit acquired Bradley in a trade with Boston last offseason, but he’s in the final season of his contract. Harris has been impressive for the Pistons this season, shooting a career-best 41 percent from 3-point range.