NBA trade rumors of Blake Griffin being dealt by the Los Angeles Clippers before the trade deadline is being reported on Monday.
Chris Broussard of ESPN.com reports a probable blockbuster deal that could have involved multiple rotational players from the Clippers and potential trade partner Denver Nuggets.
“I’ve been told the Clippers actually called Denver and offered Blake Griffin and Lance Stephenson for Danilo Gallinari, Kenneth Faried, Will Barton and Nikola Jokic. Denver turned it down because Blake will be a free agent after next season. Plus they like some of those young kids,” Broussard said in his latest NBA rumor report.
Via ESPN’s Trade Machine, the exact Broussard deal discussed works under the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement (NBA CBA) trade rules:
Los Angeles Clippers – Denver Nuggets Trade:
Blake Griffin ($18.97 million) and Lance Stephenson ($9 million) for Danilo Gallinari ($14 million), Kenneth Faried ($11.24 million), Will Barton ($3.53 million) and Nikola Jokic ($1.3 million).
Broussard added that Doc Rivers “adamantly denied” that the Clippers offered the Nuggets such a deal and the Clippers head coach also said in previous interviews that they are sticking with Griffin at least for this season.
Griffin is still out due to a hand injury he suffered in a controversial physical altercation with a team staff and is expected to rejoin the team mid-March.
Why the Nuggets might have dodged a bullet in this latest NBA trade rumor:
The Nuggets are perhaps wise in their decision to turn down Griffin, who might bolt Denver when he hits free agency after next season. At best, getting Griffin could just be a one and a half year rental and they lose young prospects in Gallinari, Jokic and Barton.
Griffin is under contract with the Clippers until the 2016-2017 season and he has an early termination option (ETO) for the 2017-2018 season, which means the athletic forward can choose to explore free agency early.
Why the Clippers badly wants this NBA trade rumor to become a reality:
For the Clippers, there is basketball logic in trying to deal Griffin this season as their championship window is closing fast. Getting four players in exchange for two—or once since Stephenson is not part of their major rotation—would have added depth both in their frontcourt and bench.
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