NBA rumors: Clippers expected to target Giannis Antetokounmpo in free agency

Sep 2, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) looks on during the first half of game two of the second round of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Miami Heat at The Field House. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

If all things were created equal, every single team in the Association would be interested in adding reigning NBA Finals MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Fresh off his Milwaukee Bucks’ surprising second-round exit in the NBA Playoffs, rumors continue to persist that the Greek Freak could very well leave in free agency following the 2020-21 season.

We previously focused on four potential trade scenaros should Giannis’ departure from Milwaukee become inevitable. We now have another top-end title contender reportedly interested in the star should he hit free agency.

Los Angeles Clippers interested in signing Giannis Antetokounmpo

“Multiple league sources have recently said the Clippers plan to pursue a deal for Giannis. One of the sources said Giannis has an ‘admiration’ for Clippers head coach Doc Rivers,” Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer reported Wednesday.

This is a rather interesting development in that Los Angeles boasts two max-contract players in that of Paul George and reigning NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. The team also doesn’t have the necessary assets in the form of draft picks to trade for Antetokounmpo after moving multiple first-rounders to Oklahoma City in the George trade.

How could the Clippers land Giannis Antetokounmpo in free agency?

As we saw with the Golden State Warriors back in 2016, there’s always a way to add another top-end player to a championship contender. The Warriors might have gutted their roster when they signed Kevin Durant. But adding him to the mix led to back-to-back titles.

Los Angeles would be in pretty much the same boat here.

  • A sign-and-trade with Milwaukee likely wouldn’t work in that these Clippers don’t have first-round draft picks to offer up to the Bucks. Impending free agent Montrezl Harrell would also likely be the biggest trade chip for Los Angeles.
  • Instead, Los Angeles would have to let the likes of Marcus Morris, Maurice Harkless and Harrell all depart in free agency after the 2019-20 season.
  • From there, the Clippers could offer up lesser picks for teams to take on the contracts of Lou Williams, Ivaca Zubac and Patrick Beverley.
  • That would completely destroy any depth Los Angeles has on its roster, forcing the team to fill its bench with vet-minimum players.

However, having a trio that consists of Leonard, George and Giannis would make the Clippers a super team by every definition of the term.

I wouldn’t put it past this team. That’s for sure.