Detroit Pistons: The Blake Griffin era is over, but where is he headed?

Blake Griffin #23 of the Detroit Pistons celebrates with Wayne Ellington (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Blake Griffin #23 of the Detroit Pistons celebrates with Wayne Ellington (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

The Detroit Pistons and Blake Griffin are working on a buyout or trade according to reports.

Adrian Wojnarowski dropped the unexpected news on Twitter:

With Blake Griffin playing sparingly for a team that is trying to rebuild, it makes sense for both sides that he be traded or bought out.

A trade is unlikely given his remaining salary and production, which leaves a buyout as the most likely option.

But the timing is surprising, as most felt the Detroit Pistons would wait until next season so that they didn’t have to eat so much of his salary.

Blake Griffin has been visibly unhappy at times this season, sometimes with himself, sometimes with the overall play of the team.

But how does this news affect the Pistons? And where will Blake Griffin go once he is a free agent?

Detroit Pistons: How will buying out Blake Griffin affect the Pistons’ salary cap?

The answer to this is: We’ll have to wait and see. Generally speaking, a player will give up some of the salary owed to him in exchange for becoming a free agent and being allowed to join a team of his choosing.

This amount depends on a lot of factors, namely how much the player really wants out. If the Detroit Pistons are really talking buyout right now, then it is possible that Blake Griffin has offered them an amount that is worth their while.

Otherwise, they would probably just wait rather than pay Griffin a huge number to play for someone else.

The largest amount left on the table (so far) was by Dwyane Wade, who gave up just over $8 million to get off the Bulls. But the Bulls still had to pay the rest, which will be the case with the Pistons.

Could Blake Griffin set the new record? It’s possible, as I can’t imagine the Pistons would do this unless there was some financial benefit.

That’s a long way of saying that the Pistons will still owe Blake Griffin the majority of his contract  if they buy him out and only the amount he agrees to give up will come off their cap sheet.

Detroit Pistons: Where will Blake Griffin go?

Blake Griffin can go anywhere he wants once the buyout is complete and he clears waivers.

It will likely be to a contending team, though which one is tough to gauge, as nearly any of them could find a way to add Blake to their roster if he is willing to take a minimum deal.

The Nets and Celtics will certainly be mentioned from teams in the East and I am sure the Trail Blazers, Nuggets or even Pelicans might take a look from the Western Conference.

The Blake Griffin era is coming to an end in Detroit and unfortunately, this was exactly the ending most of us feared when the Pistons traded for him.

It was bittersweet in many ways but this is the best move for the Detroit Pistons and the Alpha Ginger Blake Griffin.

Good luck to both.

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