The Los Angeles Lakers made their best pitch to LaMarcus Aldridge in free agency. The team got one of the first meetings with the power forward as he is expected to be extremely popular in the coming days. With competition high for Aldridge, there is a real possibility that the Lakers miss out on the forward and have to look elsewhere. Does that Plan B include Kevin Love?
According to ESPN's Ramona Shelburne, the Lakers meeting with Aldridge went "really well" as Kobe Bryant along with president Jeanie Buss and general manager Mitch Kupchak were present. They also used celebrities like Adam Levine and Snoop Dogg to make pitches to the power forward who is leaving the Portland Trail Blazers. The issue is that the San Antonio Spurs are up next to meet with Aldridge and have reportedly taken the lead as the free agent wants to make a decision sooner rather than later.
According to the San Antonio Express News, the Spurs will be entering their meeting with Aldridge having inked Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green with cap space cleared following a trade of Tiago Splitter. Leonard signed a max contract at the start of free agency. Green agreed to a deal the morning of July 1 and the Hawks, Splitter trade will be confirmed on July 9 according to Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski. All of that is to set up the spot for Aldridge who will be meeting with Tony Parker and Tim Duncan.
On the chance that the Spurs sign Aldridge, does that leave the Lakers to push for Love? According to ESPN's Chris Broussard, the Lakers have scored a meeting with Love in free agency after the forward opted out of his contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Most NBA sources are reporting that Love is expected to re-sign with Cleveland, but the Cavaliers are first going to try and ink Tristan Thompson to a deal before approaching their other free agents. That leaves a small window for teams to move in on him and negotiate.
If the Lakers do not sign Aldridge, they stand a better shot at scoring DeAndre Jordan. According to the Los Angeles Times, Jordan wants a four-year deal and a bigger role on a team. He would be the anchor of the defense in Los Angeles and likely the new face of the franchise once Bryant departs. With D'Angelo Russell and Julius Randle representing top young talent for the Lakers, adding Jordan would put them in a nice position following the departure of Bryant.