In the fallout of the Boston Celtics’ decision to waive swingman Justin Champagnie, fans have been left wondering what the front office has in store for the team’s final two roster spots. They’ll have to fill at least one of the before the season starts to meet the 14 player minimum.
CLNS Media’s Bobby Manning discussed some possibilities earlier this week, listing off some potential candidates to land in Boston this summer as free agents. Amongst them was fan favorite Blake Griffin, who spent last season with the Celtics. According to Manning, “the door remains open” for the former No. 1 overall pick to return to the Cs for another push for Banner 18.
“My mind then goes to Blake Griffin,” Manning wrote. “I’ve heard the door remains opens for his return despite the distance from family and his home on the west coast. Given that he mulled his options until October last year, it’s worth assuming he’ll follow a similarly deliberative process this summer, and his veteran status allows the team to sign him for a second-year salary on the cap sheet — $2-million this year — actually less than Champagnie would’ve made. Any other veteran with over 10 years of NBA experience would qualify for the same cap discount.”
The Boston Celtics bringing back Blake Griffin should be a no-brainer
To put it simply — Blake Griffin rules. He was a great addition to the Boston Celtics’ roster last year, bringing veteran experience and good vibes to the team. The remarkable thing about Griffin is that, despite being a star in the NBA for many years, he seems to have absolutely no ego within the team.
Back in February, The Athletic’s Jay King put together a piece detailing Griffin’s bond with the team. Celtics center Luke Kornet gave King a great explanation of what makes the former Clippers star such a great fit with the Cs.
“He just has personal relationships with every person on the team,” Kornet told King. “And I think that’s something that really stands out: the ability to just care and reach out to everyone in some way and also respect everyone is another big part of it. It’s kind of hard to explain, but top to bottom he just reaches out to everybody. And then when you’re in groups, because he knows everyone well, he’s perfect at bringing people together.”
On top of all of the “glue guy” stuff, Griffin remained ready when his name was called in the 2022-2023 campaign. He was pretty effective in his 16 starts for the Celtics, filling in games when Al Horford would rest on back-to-backs.
In those games, the 34-year-old averaged 8.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists in about 20.3 minutes per game. He was efficient as well, knocking down 52.2% of his attempts from the field and 38.8% of those from beyond the arc.
Most importantly, every time Griffin checked in for the Celtics, he gave 100%. He was consistently taking charges, diving for loose balls, and hitting the offensive glass.
If Griffin would like to come back for another shot at a title, there’s no reason that Boston shouldn’t have him.