My question: ....is the #1 locked up in LA or are the Clippers willing to talk to OKC? I ask this as Griffin is the closest thing to a 'homegrown' superstar that OKC will ever see. Are they willing to ante up to secure him? Hometown/state heroes tend to put people in the seats, cash in the owner's pocket and may in fact secure the OKC franchise in the long run. I can see the powers that be (High Lord Sternicus) approving this pick swap, but what would it take?
I tried the following which works from a cap perspective. This may be insane (and no, I am not a fan of either team) so feel free to inform me of any excess drinking/smoking I may have partaken in.
To LA Clippers:
The Clips gain a young, high-scoring player with superstar potential in Durant, a decent FC in Collison and the #3 pick. The #3 could be used in a variety of ways with Rubio (he wants big city/big market and LA fits that) or Harden a possibility. The lineup and star power of this trade may be enough for even the Clips to lose their perma-stink.
#1 (Blake Griffin - hometown hero)
OKC gains a young budding SF in Al Thornton, fills the hole at C with Kaman (I don't see Krstic as a long term solution at C in the West) and gets the 'hometown hero' PF with superstar potential in Griffin.
The big question: Is OKC willing to gamble on Griffin's potential development vs. the already visible growth of Durant?
I was following everything you said until you said OKC will deal Durant. Durant is going to challenge for the MVP in a couple of years. If the Thunder had picks #1, #2, and #3 in return for them in this draft they probably still wouldn't trade him. "Are the Thunder willing to gamble...versus Durant's already visible growth?" He was 6th in the league in scoring last year in only his 2nd year. That's ridiculous. That would be like the Cavs trading LeBron in 2005, just 2 years into his career. It just doesn't make sense.
That being said, OKC should be and probably are trying hard to get their "homegrown star" on the team. He'll help sell season tickets for a decade for what is basically a brand new franchise. Even if they have to give up Green plus #3 and 2010 1st rounder or Westbrook and 2010 1st rounder I think it will make them more money over time. I am not saying it would win them (Thunder) more games over time but I think that it will make them more money. Putting Griffin and Durant on a billboard would cause accidents in Oklahoma City.
You don't trade a Durant...
I don't see how you can validify trading Westbrook for him either, if he came out last year he would have maybe been top 10, and saying that, I think almost every player in the top 10 has made more progess than him. Even though he has gaudy numbers, it was a pretty weak scedule.
I am guessing you are asking me how I could justify trading Westbrook for Griffin, which might be a dumb move to a lot of people. I know that it would be kind of a stupid trade in a basketball sense (not THAT stupid, Griffin could be a total stud) but I really do think that having Griffin and Durant together would make people in OKC more excited than adding James Harden to a core of Durant, Westbrook, and Green. I think that Griffin would help the Thunder lock up season tickets next Friday, the day after the draft, to 10 year PSL's (or however the Thunder do it). I know in a basketball sense it isn't a 'slam dunk' (pardon the TERRIBLE pun) but financially I think that it would be a good move and would help solidify NBA basketball's arrival in Oklahoma City.
I disagree with your assessment of Griffin though, too. I think that he would have gone ahead of Westbrook last year if this were in the 2008 NBA Draft. I think that OKC would have taken him and tried to trade Green to move back into the Top 10 to take Westbrook (who I think would have fallen a little bit). Homegrown kid who is a legit 6'10'' and who A LOT of people think has perennial All-Star written all over him (some see more of a Kenyon Martin, I see more).
The Clippers will not trade Griffin to OKC for anything less than Durant. OKC is not going to trade Durant.
No chance of a trade happening.
Presti would have never done that, he wants to win...he traded Ray Allen when they were in SEA. That doesn't bring fans in the seats. Who has Griffin gone up against this year at PF? He wasn't that hyped last year, his division was weak, and college basketball was weak in general last year. I am just tired off all the "Homers," who say trade the franchise for Blake Griffin...he'll be good; how can you say Westbrook would have fallen, he jumped up the boards more than anyone else. Stop blowing smoke, here's an article to show you Griffin was a mid to late lottery pick last year; am I saying they couldn't have been wrong - no, he might be good enough - but at the time he wasn't considered.
"In theory, communism works -- in theory."
When did 26 become the end or "peak of his powers" Thorton will only get beter maybe when he is 30 -31 he will be nearing the peak of his powers. But I agree Durant is going nowwhere, for nobody!