LaMarcus Aldridge has decided to sign with the San Antonio Spurs as a free agent over a return to the Portland Trail Blazers and reports have the contract at $80 million over four years and now the Blazers could look at trying to work a sign-and-trade to get something out of losing Aldridge and this comes as the Spurs are targeting David West and Carlos Boozer as free agents.
Aldridge reportedly narrowed his choice down to the Suns and the Spurs and according to Adrian Wojnarowski, Aldridge picked San Antonio on Saturday. Yahoo Sports reports that Aldridge told the Blazers on Friday night that the choices were between Phoenix and San Antonio, which could give the team a chance to try and work a sign and trade for Aldridge. Wojnarowski reports that Aldridge is agreeing to sign a four year deal worth the $80 million maximum and the contract has an opt out.
The Spurs set themselves up to get Aldridge after agreeing with Kawhi Leonard by trading Tiago Splitter to the Hawks. The Suns had reportedly pushed hard for Aldridge and made a strong impression in their meeting and he clearly thought long and hard about it. Aldridge met with the Suns after they agreed with Tyson Chandler and Wojnarowski reported the team gave Aldridge "something to think about." But the Spurs always looked like the favorites and now they have landed Aldridge.
The Spurs brought back Danny Green on a contract this offseason and the team also agreed with Leonard on a lengthy extension. The Spurs will be the favorites in the West after signing Aldridge, as he averaged 23 points and 10 rebounds this season and was an All-Star. Aldridge joins Tony Parker, Tim Duncan, Leonard and Danny Green for Gregg Popovich, who recently signed a five year extension. Leonard is set to sign a $90 million extension and now he will play side-by-side with Aldridge for years to come.
Aldridge took a number of meetings in free agency, including with the Lakers, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors along with the Blazers and Spurs. Aldridge was the top name left on the free agent market after DeAndre Jordan signed with the Mavericks and now some teams will have to look elsewhere for big man help. The Lakers were very interested in Aldridge, while the Suns and Blazers also had shots to get him.
The Blazers were preparing for Aldridge leaving, as they brought in Ed Dixon and Al-Farouq Aminu as free agents. The team also has lost Wesley Johnson to the Mavericks, so a sign a trade to get something back could be appealing for the Spurs. According to Yahoo Sports, the team is also looking into David West as a free agent option. Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the team is "aggressively pursuing" West after agreeing with Aldridge and they could give him a veteran minimum offer.
The Spurs lost Marco Belinelli to the Kings and Green can help step up to deal with that lost depth and Manu Ginobili is also expected to return. Leonard is signing a max extension and now the team has Aldridge along with Duncan up front. Ramona Shelburne reports that Carlos Boozer could be a target for the Spurs.