On Monday, the Los Angeles Clippers shocked the entire NBA community.
Trading star forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons for Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic, a first-round pick and a second-round pick, the Clippers not only surprised the world, but also confused a lot of people.
What did the trade mean?
Was it the beginning of a rebuild? Was Griffin an issue in Los Angeles? Was it the beginning of a salary dump in order to eventually pursue LeBron James in the summer?
Those questions are all still on the table, but coach Doc Rivers’ recent comments suggest that the team has a plan.
"We make this trade and then everyone thinks we're just trading everybody away. That's not true," Rivers said when addressing the Griffin trade for the first time publicly on Tuesday, per Jovan Buha of ESPN. "But that's what's out there. Sometimes you can't control the narrative. You just can control your job, and that's what I have to do."
Rivers suggested that the team might not make another move. He even told Sports Illustrated’s Ben Golliver that the team still intends on making a push towards the playoffs.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski previously reported that the Clippers will continue to explore trade possibilities for All-Star center DeAndre Jordan and star sixth man Lou Williams before the February 8 trade deadline.
But, Rivers made it very clear that winning is still a priority, no matter who suits up for the team.
"Sometimes there's complete rebuilds. We're not doing that,” the coach said, per Buha. “Sometimes you're juggling and trying to create money, and you're still trying to stay relevant and win. I think that's more of us right now.”
Interestingly, the organization made it very clear that they didn’t actively seek out a trade for Griffin. Instead, a simple call from the Pistons put that deal into motion.
"Detroit's call. No, really. I mean, it's the truth," Rivers noted, via Buha. "You have to be honest with yourself. We like what we brought together. ... But we were looking at it with all the injuries we're having and all the stuff, and you're looking at the other teams out there and you're comparing yourself. … If you're not good enough, or if you don't think you can beat them, or if you need more help, then you have to do something about it. And to do something, sometimes you have to take chances. You have to mix it up and change it and see where you can go in the future, and that's what we thought of doing.”
The same message was echoed by president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank.
"You never know," Frank admitted. "If you were to ask me the question a week ago whether we were going to trade Blake Griffin, the answer would have probably been different than why we're standing here today. You never know how it's going to unfold with the trade deadline looming. There will be a lot of activity, so we'll see how it plays out.”
Therefore, while it doesn’t seem as though the Clippers are actively seeking another trade at the moment, anything can happen. If a team comes calling with an offer they can’t refuse, they could pull the trigger again, just like they did with Griffin.News Now - Sport News