It’s no secret; the nucleus of the San Antonio Spurs is aging. Tim Duncan will be 39 at the end of this season, Manu Ginobili will be 38 in July, and the baby of the bunch, Tony Parker, will be 33 at the end of the season. The waters of the Fountain of Youth can only hydrate the Spurs’ Big 3 for so long before it’s time to rebuild, or trade for younger players to build around Kawhi Leonard. Over the weekend at the D-League Showcase, Grantland’s Zach Lowe heard rumblings of the Spurs going after Portland big man LaMarcus Aldridge in the offseason.
There is no way Aldridge leaves the Blazers for any team this offseason. Last June Aldridge wholeheartedly promised to sign a contract extension in this coming June. From a man who hasn’t made any (to my knowledge) outlandish claims, it is smart to take his word. In the same press conference Aldridge also said he wanted to go down as “the best Blazer ever.”
If that’s not enough proof, Aldridge is playing alongside the second best point guard (behind Steph Curry) in the NBA today, Damian Lillard. The Blazers are also stacked to the brim with prime role players, who are eligible to sign new deals this offseason under the Bird rights.
The Blazers have always felt that if anyone were to steal away their prized big-man it would be a team in Aldridge’s home state of Texas. Aldridge attended Seagoville High School in Seagoville, Texas and went on to play two years at the University of Texas.
If Duncan and Ginobili retire after this season, the Spurs will have cleared up enough cap space to offer Aldridge a max deal, but will be stuck in a similar situation as Miami where they have to convince veteran players to come at a reduced price.
The Mavericks could sign Aldridge in the offseason to play alongside Dirk, or to replace Dirk if he retires.
The Rockets would probably have the best shot at making a move on Aldridge. The Rockets have a bevy of team-friendly contracts on their roster making them desirable in a sign-and-trade situation.
The only reason for Aldridge to leave the Blazers would be to play for a big-market team and finally gain the recognition that he deserves. LaMarcus Aldridge didn’t just start putting together crazy numbers; he’s been averaging 20.6 points and 8.8 rebounds since 2007. No one ever knew because he plays in the microscopic market of Portland.
Don’t worry Portland fans, Aldridge isn’t leaving Portland. He plays alongside superstar Damian Lillard, under one of the greatest coaches in Terry Stotts, and there’s always the part where if he stays in Portland he can make an extra cool $30 million and add an extra year onto his contract.