San Antonio Spurs: LaMarcus Aldridge reacts to offseason trade rumors
By Rob Wolkenbrod
At San Antonio Spurs Media Day, LaMarcus Aldridge reacted to the offseason trade rumors that surrounded him.
Around the 2017 NBA Draft, San Antonio Spurs power forward LaMarcus Aldridge was the center of trade rumors. He was available for a high first-round pick, but nothing materialized. Sam Amick of USA Today reported Aldridge was “unhappy” with the Spurs and the “driving force” of the trade talks.
However, Spurs General Manager RC Buford shut down the rumors, with no fallout afterward. Aldridge stayed with San Antonio in the offseason, while other roster moves were made. That included the acquisition of Rudy Gay, Joffrey Lauvergne and Brandon Paul in free agency.
At Monday’s media day, Aldridge was asked about the offseason trade chatter. He addressed it but didn’t seem phased:
“It’s a part of the NBA. Guys move around and guys go team-to-team at times. It happens and I’m used to it. I know I can control what I do and that’s what I did. I worked hard all summer. I got better, I feel like. I’m healthy right now. I feel good.”
“No, maybe in my younger days in Portland, I took it personal. But as I’m older, I’m used to the game and I know it’s a business. So, no, I don’t take it personal anymore.”
When asked about potential unhappiness in San Antonio, Aldridge said, “People are always going to say things or flip things or run with stories,” and explained how it frustrated him.
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Aldridge wasn’t the only Spur to face offseason trade rumors. Danny Green’s name was floated around, but nothing materialized with him, either. The organization didn’t make an offseason trade, and only signed players from free agency or Summer League teams.
Aldridge will enter his third season with the Spurs. In Year 2, he averaged 17.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks in 32.4 minutes per game. It was the first season he didn’t make the All-Star Game since 2010-11, his fifth season with the Portland Trail Blazers.
After the season, the Texas product will get the chance to hit free agency, as the Spurs tied a player option worth $22 million to the final year of his contract. If declined, he might join LeBron James, DeMarcus Cousins, Paul George, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul and other marquee names on the open market.
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The discussion of offseason rumors will move away, as Aldridge and the Spurs take the floor for the first preseason game on Tuesday, Oct. 2.