Chicago Bulls Rumors: Blake Griffin trade speculation rises

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Rumors of Blake Griffin being shopped by the Detroit Pistons became public and the Chicago Bulls were mentioned as a potential landing spot. After coming off a career-high in points, how likely is it Griffin gets dealt?

Coming off one of the best all-around seasons of his career, Blake Griffin is being name-dropped in trade conversations after a legendary free agency in which we saw NBA stars sign pretty much everywhere except the Chicago Bulls.

Griffin averaged a career-high 24.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, 5.4 assists per game in his first full season with the Detroit Pistons playing in 75 games. Last season, Griffin played 25 games for Detroit and 33 for the Los Angeles Clippers in 2017-18.

The six-time NBA All-Star is a free agent to be in 2022 when he’s 33-years-old. Griffin will have a player option in ’22, but with the way the NBA has been shaping to the last few seasons, the Pistons won’t let Griffin walk for free. A trade out of Detroit is likely, but that being accomplished before or during this season is even more unlikely.

With a base salary of $34,234,964 in 2019-20, $36,595,996 in 2020-21, and $38,957,028 in 2021-22 taking on a contract of that size is a hard bargain for a lot of teams unless there are assets worth trading for or players with contracts too large to cut.

The trade speculation started on Twitter after Griffin liked Feature Hoops tweet mentioning Griffin could possibly be traded and the Pistons have spoken to three teams. After he liked then unliked the tweet, this sparked speculation.

It would be logical to see why the Pistons would want to trade Griffin. Think about his previous knee surgeries, the fact he’s 30-years-old, and Detroit just drafted Sekou Doumbouya 15th overall in the NBA Draft. Right now or at the midseason trade deadline would be the best time to get the most value for him, dump his salary, and blow up the roster in a complete rebuild.

On the contrary, Griffin can be the cornerstone and with Andre Drummond at the center; the two make one of the most forceful big man duos in the East if not the entire league. Griffin scored a career-high 24.5 points and expanded his offensive game from dunks, lay-ups, and post-ups to mid-range jumpers, euro steps, and a career-high seven three-pointer attempts per game.

Griffin has become one of the NBA’s modern-day stretch four’s that are key to most of the best teams success in the league. The Chicago Bulls, however, have a stretch-four of their own in Lauri Markkannen.

The only reason we know of the Bulls being linked to Griffin and the Pistons was because of a follow-up tweet claiming Detroit called Chicago about a potential deal.

Whether or not these reports are true, it would come as a surprise to see the Bulls take on a bankroll owed like Griffin’s. Of course, I can see Griffin fitting in with the Bulls, but that would mean trading either Wendell Carter Jr. or Otto Porter Jr., future draft picks and potentially Chandler Hutchinson or Kris Dunn.

If a call was actually made to Chicago, the logical trade option would be Dunn, Carter Jr., and a first-round pick for Griffin if you’re Detroit. You could throw Porter Jr., Hutchinson, Denzel Valentine, or Cristiano Felicio in talks for me, but I still don’t think Griffin is going to push the Bulls into contention for a deep playoff run and Bulls’ management knows that.

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Bulls management seems content with where they’re at after free agency and the draft and if this rumor is true, it went out one ear and the other from GarPax.