Marc Stein of The New York Times first reported (via Twitter) that Brooklyn is considered a “strong contender” for Griffin, given his long-standing relationships with multiple Nets players. Griffin, who has played with DeAndre Jordan and Bruce Brown in the past, has relationships with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, among other Nets, tweets Edwards.
While Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported earlier today that Griffin – who has agreed to a buyout with the Pistons – would make a decision on his next team after conversations with several of his suitors, Charania suggests that clubs with interest in the veteran forward expect him to choose Brooklyn.
The Nets, whose star-studded roster is led by Durant, Irving, and James Harden, have looked dominant lately, even with KD sidelined, and may give Griffin the best opportunity to compete for a championship this season. Brooklyn has been on the lookout for frontcourt help, though the recent emergence of young center Nicolas Claxton has lessened the urgency of that search.
It’s also worth noting that the Nets have the ability to offer Griffin more than the minimum salary if need be. The team has the taxpayer mid-level exception available, as well as a $5.7MM disabled player exception.
The Lakers, Clippers, Heat, Warriors, and Trail Blazers are among the other teams that have reportedly expressed interest in Griffin, and Stein says the Celtics can be added to that group as well. Technically, the Clippers (and the Bucks) can’t currently sign Griffin due to their hard cap, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link). The Clippers seemed like an improbable suitor for the 31-year-old anyway, given how his last stint in L.A. ended.