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San Antonio Spurs: LaMarcus Aldridge responds to critcism

By Rob Wolkenbrod
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 14: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs warms up before the game against the Golden State Warriors in Game One of the Western Conference Finals of the 2017 NBA Playoffs on May 14, 2017 at ORACLE Arena in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 14: LaMarcus Aldridge #12 of the San Antonio Spurs warms up before the game against the Golden State Warriors in Game One of the Western Conference Finals of the 2017 NBA Playoffs on May 14, 2017 at ORACLE Arena in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
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San Antonio Spurs power forward LaMarcus Aldridge took to Instagram to respond to his critics after a rumor filled offseason.

LaMarcus Aldridge’s 2017 offseason can’t be deemed a quiet one. The San Antonio Spurs big man was the subject of trade rumors around the 2017 NBA Draft, with the idea the organization wanted a top pick, in return.

Along with criticism on social media, Aldridge was called out by head coach Gregg Popovich in the media. This came during the Western Conference Finals, when the Texas product struggled. It was after Kawhi Leonard injured his ankle in Game 1 and didn’t return for the rest of the series. However, Aldridge is shrugging all of this off.

In an Instagram post on Thursday, Aldridge seemingly responded to those critics. He did so in a Spurs t-shirt, which could be symbolic of this summer’s trade rumors, amongst other speculation that he could leave the team (h/t News4SanAntonio):

Me listening to everyone saying what I’m going to do or should do…. y’all done yet? ?

A post shared by LaMarcus Aldridge (@aldridge_121) on Aug 23, 2017 at 4:43pm PDT

It’s a positive to see Aldridge embracing the comments he’s received, as he likely goes into the 2017-18 season as the starting power forward. This will be the last year of his contract unless he exercises a $22 million player option for 2018-19.

Aldridge’s 2016-17 season featured some of his lowest statistics since his rookie year; he had 17.3 points and 7.3 rebounds. However, he shot a career-high 41 percent from 3-point range and still averaged a block per game.

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It will be numbers Aldridge looks to build off for the 2017-18 season, an important one for him before the player option hits and as he ages (32-years-old).

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