Blake Griffin’s off-court fight that resulted in a broken hand sparked rumors the Los Angeles Clippers might consider trading the power forward, and it appears the franchise truly is exploring the option.
According to Mitch Lawrence of Sporting News, the Clippers and Denver Nuggests have discussed a trade for the 26-year-old Griffin.
The Clippers have talked to the Nuggets about trading Blake Griffin to Denver, per NBA sources.
— Mitch Lawrence (@Mitch_Lawrence) February 5, 2016
To be clear, this could be non-news news that is simply both organizations completing due diligence. Perhaps the Nuggets called, the Clippers asked for an offer and the teams discussed.
Los Angeles has an excellent reason to be taking this seriously, however.
According to RealGM, Denver is armed with a trio of first-round selections in 2016 and the option to swap with the New York Knicks, which is unlikely.
If the Clippers elect to trade Griffin, they’ll demand future-focused pieces. After all, they’re shipping off a player now entering his prime. What better way to build depth than through the draft?
Plus, Denver would be forced to give up immediate-impact talents. The Nuggets have been shopping Kenneth Faried anyway, and the power forward has three years remaining on his current deal. Griffin would play over Faried, so it makes sense to send the Manimal to Los Angeles in return.
Emmanuel Mudiay and Nikola Jokic should be off the table, and Denver should try to protect Danilo Gallinari. Other than those three talents, the Nuggets should make every asset available in a potential trade for Griffin.