The Los Angeles Clippers finally decided it’s time to push the rebuild button by trading star power forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons in exchange for multiple players and picks, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported on Monday.

The move sent shockwaves across the NBA, as many thought the Clippers were in serious talks to move DeAndre Jordan and Lou Williams. Instead, the Clippers pulled the trigger on a deal that shipped the former No.1 overall pick and perennial All-Star to Detroit, signaling the start of a new era for the franchise.

Los Angeles also sent backup big men Willie Reed and Brice Johnson in exchange for a "King’s Ransom" trade haul that includes Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, Boban Marjanovic, a first-round pick (top-4 protected from 2018 to 2020) and a second-round pick (2019).

Griffin, who is averaging 22.6 PPG on 44.1 FG and 7.9 RPG this season, re-signed with the Clippers on a five-year, $171 MM deal last summer despite Chris Paul’s move to the Houston Rockets. The Clippers had high hopes Griffin could anchor the franchise moving forward. However, a poor start and injuries to some of their key players might have changed the direction of the team.

What’s next for the Clippers?

Trading Griffin is just the first step towards creating some sort of flexibility in the Clippers payroll. According to Wojnarowski, the Clippers are still entertaining offers for All-Star center DeAndre Jordan and former Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams, who is having the best season of his career (23.5 PPG on 45.1 FG% and 5.2 APG).

NBA analyst Zach Lowe, of ESPN, opined that the Clippers no longer believed Griffin would put them anywhere close to a title contention. By getting rid of his massive contract, the Clippers will have the cap space to make a run at several elite free agents in 2019. This list includes Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, Kyrie Irving and possibly LeBron James.

As for the Pistons, he thought Stan Van Gundy had no choice but to make a big splash on the trading front, hoping the trio of Andre Drummond, Reggie Jackson and Griffin would be enough to clinch a playoff spot, and in the process, save his job as head coach and GM.

Then again, Lowe said the ceiling for the Pistons is very clear – they are a super-mediocre team at best.

“And it's important to remember: maybe super-mediocrity, with multiple playoff appearances in the middle of the Eastern Conference, is OK for the Pistons. They have obviously considered that endgame,” Lowe said of the Pistons’ long-game situation.

Lou Williams trade

Williams is among the hottest targets on the trade market right now, and his inflated value is something the Clippers will be trying to leverage in trade discussions with several suitors.

Marc Stein of the New York Times said the Clippers are looking to move Williams and Jordan as well in hope of getting assets in the form of draft picks and young players. The Cleveland Cavaliers have emerged front-runners for both players, and sources close to situation reported that they already had some preliminary discussions about a potential deal.

Other teams who could make a run at Williams in the 11th hour of the trade window are the Oklahoma City Thunder, Portland Trail Blazers and his former team, the Toronto Raptors.