Blake Griffin's best NBA landing spots after buyout from Detroit Pistons
By Jason McIntyre
FOX Sports Betting Analyst
In 2019, Blake Griffin was named third-team All-NBA, and he carried the Detroit Pistons to the playoffs while averaging 24.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game.
Several injuries and less than 24 months later, Griffin has been bought out by the Pistons, and he’s poised to sign with a contender and secure a championship ring. Griffin turns 32 next week, and injuries have robbed the former All-NBA forward of his athleticism. His ideal fit now is coming off the bench for 15-20 minutes per game and providing pop the way Boris Diaw did for many years in San Antonio or Robert Horry did in the early 2000s with the Shaq-and-Kobe Lakers.
Here are four potential landing spots for Griffin, as well as some thoughts on how the addition of the former All-Star would impact each squad.
No team makes more sense than the Lakers.
Griffin can return to Los Angeles, the city where he started his career and spends the offseason, and the Lakers could use Griffin, perhaps alongside Anthony Davis or with the second unit to give LeBron and AD rest.
When Griffin took the Pistons to the playoffs two years ago, he shot 36% on 3-pointers. That fell to 24% last season, and he is shooting 31% from deep this season. But he was the fulcrum of the offense. Now, he needs to spot up.
Brooklyn’s roster is still a work in progress, especially in the front court. The Nets are tinkering with Nicolas Claxton and signed G-Leaguer Tyler Cook, but the bottom line is they have nobody behind DeAndre Jordan. If Blake Griffin wants minutes, his best bet is in Brooklyn, where there are probably games in which he’ll play 30-plus minutes.
Steve Nash's squad is reportedly in the lead for Griffin, too.
The Nets are probably his best bet to win a championship, too, given that they’re the favorites to capture the title.
In a perfect world, a rested and healthy Griffin can fill a Draymond Green-type role for the Blazers when opponents double-team Damian Lillard out of the pick-and-roll. Green in Golden State is the facilitator – he isn't always scoring, but he can make the occasional 3-pointer – driving and kicking or making high-IQ passes after teams trap Stephen Curry.
Portland made the conference finals two years ago and should get healthy in the second half, with CJ McCollum, Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins returning from injury. Griffin would provide depth and a playmaking role off the bench.
Some would consider the Warriors noncontenders, but allow me to change your mind. Golden State was working in two new starters to begin the season, including a 19-year-old rookie. Steve Kerr spent the first half tinkering everywhere, trying to find the right mix around Curry. How would a Green and Griffin front court look?
The Warriors are a team nobody wants to see in the playoffs because they have the greatest shooter in NBA history. If things break this team's way, Golden State suddenly becomes a mysterious factor in the West.
Jason McIntyre is a FOX Sports gambling analyst, and he also writes about the NFL and NBA Draft. He joined FS1 in 2016 and has appeared on every show on the network. In 2017, McIntyre began producing gambling content on the NFL, college football and NBA for FOX Sports. He had a gambling podcast for FOX, "Coming Up Winners," in 2018 and 2019. Before arriving at FOX, he created the website The Big Lead, which he sold in 2010.