Soon-to-be NBA free agents get recruited by other players from other teams well in advance of the offseason. This is one of the Association’s worst-kept secrets. So if you’re dealing with a free agent worth a damn, you better believe they’re hearing from rival players.
Unless, apparently, they’re Blake Griffin. He told HoopsHype’s Alex Kennedy he isn’t a part of all that:
Have other players tried to recruit you at all? Because while you’re focused on this season, I know that does happen sometimes where guys from other teams will reach out. Without naming names, has anything like that happened?
BG: No, I haven’t had any conversations like that at all. Early on, I told everybody around me – agents, friends and family – that this isn’t something I’m going to be talking about and we’ll deal with it when the time comes. I think player-wise, I think everybody respects that you have a team and you’re focused on the season and all that.
All of us should take this with a grain of salt, or at least a wink-wink. It’s tough to believe Griffin, who is projected to be a top-five free agent after terminating the last year of his deal with the Los Angeles Clippers, hasn’t fielded any recruitment pitches from fellow NBAers.
Then again, perhaps he’s telling the truth. Most think he and Chris Paul will re-sign with Clippers anyway. More than that, if he actually asked those around him to leave the issue alone, it’s totally believable that they’re just letting him do his thing and will revisit the situation over the summer.
Personally, I’m going to bet he’s heard at least one to 25 sales pitches over the course of the year. He’s too valuable not to target, and even if sarcastically, the topic has to have at least been broached somewhere, anywhere, by anyone.