Report: In wake of Chris Paul trade, Clippers focus on re-signing Blake Griffin

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Chris Paul is on his way to Houston in an attempt to form a superteam to challenge Golden State.

Now what for the Clippers?

They have two options: One, tear it all the way down and rebuild.

The other: Re-sign Blake Griffin, run the offense through him and put his underrated passing skills to the test while surrounded by shooters and DeAndre Jordan.

The Clippers are opting for door No. 2, at least for now, according to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.

The fundamental question is: Does Griffin want to stay? The Clippers can offer more money and a larger contract, five -years starting just shy of $30 million a year. However, he will have good teams from the East calling. Miami is interested, and they have a strong point guard in Goran Dragic, a good wing defender in Justise Winslow, and a guy inside who can defend, rebound, and finish dunks in Hassan Whiteside. Plus, no state taxes on all that new money. Also, Boston (if they strike out with Gordon Hayward) and other teams will come calling. Griffin will have options.

If Griffin does stay, this could be interesting if the team is built right. Griffin is an underrated passer and playmaker — he averaged more than five assists per game last season, and that was with Chris Paul on the team. The Clippers would need to use him sort of like Denver uses Nikola Jokic, running the offense through him out high where he is a threat to score from with a midrange jumper, put the ball on the floor, or make a pass. Griffin would need to be surrounded by shooters — they just added Lou Williams and Patrick Beverley, both good shooters — and guys willing to work off the ball, such as J.J. Redick. Who is almost certainly gone. Just acquired Sam Dekker also could fit in that kind of offense. That version of a Clippers team isn’t a contender, but it also could be pretty good.

If Griffin leaves, the Clippers don’t have much a choice and will have to start shopping Jordan around and rebuilding the team (they got a fairly good haul for CP3 for that, considering the situation, Dekker and Montrezl Harrell are good young players who can be part of a rotation). Williams and Beverley also likely would be traded by the February deadline. Then Los Angeles will have two rebuilding teams, and that always makes for a great rivalry.