While potential Hall of Famer LaMarcus Aldridge has been wonderful in his stint with the San Antonio Spurs, the team may have outgrown their need for him.
Throughout his career, San Antonio Spurs big man LaMarcus Aldridge has been one of the most perennial overlooked and undervalued players in the NBA. Even this season, which he didn’t get to finish due to shoulder surgery, Aldridge managed to post a career-high 1.6 blocks per game on a career-best 53.2 effective field goal percentage.
Aldridge has aged like fine wine, remaining durable for the most part and transforming to the needs of his team. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like the Spurs need him to be that guy anymore and might be better off distributing his minutes elsewhere.
San Antonio picked up the pace with Aldridge out of the lineup in Orlando. With LaMarcus out of the rotation, the Spurs’ plethora of young guards and wings run wild, pushing the tempo and moving the ball up and down the court with exceptional speed. Their average pace was 105.5 during their eight seeding games, which is up from 101.14 on the season and a team-low 99.82 with Aldridge on the court this season.
Even though they didn’t have that go-to scorer at the five, they made up for it with the influential defense provided by center Jakob Poeltl. Putting the three young guards at positions 1-through-3 helped San Antonio discover its identity and a power forward/center lineup with both DeRozan and Aldridge isn’t likely to produce the same results.
That leaves an important question for the silver and black: Should they look to trade him this offseason?