Chauncey Billups ‘Surprised’ About Blake Griffin Trade To Pistons [VIDEO]
The Detroit Pistons acquired star forward Blake Griffin on Monday in a blockbuster trade that will see the Los Angeles Clippers get Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, and Boban Marjanovic, as well as a pair of draft picks.
Blake Griffin trade news
One of Griffin’s former teammates, Chauncey Billups, weighed in on the swap, and admitted he was shocked to hear of it.
“I’m a little surprised,” said Billups. “I mean obviously you heard all the reports about ‘[DeAndre Jordan] must be moved,’ Lou Williams. Blake surprises me but I’m happy for the trade and for the business.”
“I think getting an All-Star caliber player like Blake, pairing him with [Andre] Drummond in a new arena down in the city, I think it’s great for the franchise.”
Sources have said the Clippers will continue to discuss dealing Jordan and Williams, with a plan to focus on young players and draft picks while competing for a playoff spot this season.
Drummond welcomed Griffin to the Pistons with an Instagram post.
“No longer a foe, now a true friend of the crown. Welcome to Detroit @blakegriffin32! #dillydillydunks @budlight,” wrote Drummond.
Griffin agreed to a five-year, $171 million deal with the Clippers on July 1. Griffin did not receive a no-trade clause as part of the new contract.
This season, Griffin is averaging 22.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 5.4 assists in 33 games for the 25-24 Clippers, who are ninth in the Western Conference, 14.5 games behind the Golden State Warriors entering Monday.
Griffin’s career averages are 21.6 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.2 assists.
“Blake is one of the best players ever to wear a Clippers jersey,” Lawrence Frank, the Clippers’ president of basketball operations, said in a press release. “We want to express our gratitude and respect for everything he has done for this team and the City of Los Angeles. This was a very difficult decision, but we ultimately felt it was appropriate for the franchise. We would also like to thank Brice and Willie for their contributions to our organization.”
Clippers owner Steve Ballmer also thanked Griffin in a tweet Monday and wished him good luck in Detroit.
Griffin’s career has been marred by injuries. After being drafted with the first pick in the 2009 draft by the Clippers, the forward broke his left kneecap, had surgery and missed the entire 2009-10 season.
The following season, officially his rookie year, Griffin was selected as an All-Star, won the NBA Slam Dunk Contest, and was named the NBA Rookie of the Year.
Since then, he has missed time with back spasms, a torn left quad, a broken hand, right knee surgery, a broken toe, a sprained left MCL and a concussion. He missed 21 games in 2017 and 47 in 2016.
Griffin is also starring in a movie called The Female Brain. Based on the 2006 book of the same name, the comedy film is written and directed by Whitney Cummings and stars Cummings, James Marsden, Deon Cole, Sofia Vergara and Cecily Strong. Griffin plays a basketball player who is in a relationship with Strong’s character. The film will be released February 9.
LOS ANGELES, CA – NOVEMBER 09: Blake Griffin #32 of the Los Angeles Clippers scores on a jumper over Mason Plumlee #24 of the Portland Trail Blazers during a 111-80 Clippers win at Staples Center on November 9, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.