LaMarcus Aldridge is currently thinking of the many options available and will probably take a couple of days before he makes his final decision.
Sources say the strongest pitch was done by the Spurs, who talked to him about playing with a future hall of famer at the end of his career and then taking over when he is done along with Kawhi Leonard. This was his second meeting with the Spurs, a sign that he likes what they’re offering. In the meeting, Popovich, Duncan, Leonard and Tony Parker all pitched in the idea of having him around.
The Los Angeles Lakers also got a second chance to convince the star forward on Thursday, in a meeting that lasted an hour and a half. They only spoke about basketball, sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne.
The Lakers asked the player for a second meeting after being told that their first pitch to the star was focused mainly on off-the-court business and marketing opportunities in the area and not basketball. The team did not give him information on how they would use him on the court on the first time around and spoke about that in the second meeting.
Not Coming Back To The Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers are the only team hes played for in his NBA career, but that will soon change because he does not plan on returning to the team. Aldridge has also talked to the San Antonio Spurs, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, Toronto Raptors and the two meetings with the Lakers.
One source close to the meetings between the forward and the Lakers, said it took the team more than one hour to give him the details on how they would rebuild and use him on the court. The meeting was focused a little too much on the business side.
After getting the thoughts on the player’s opinion to the pitch, the Lakers requested a second meeting and got it. One source said the team apologized to the player for not giving him the best presentation the first time and thanked him for the second opportunity. In addition to general manager Mitch Kupchak and coach Byron Scott, they brought assistant coach Mark Madsen to the second chance. Madsen is involved in the coaching and analytics staff.
Meeting With Pat Riley
After speaking to the Lakers, Aldridge left for a dinner meeting with Heat president Pat Riley, a source told ESPN.com. The team is heavily interested, especially after keeping Dwyane Wade with a one year deal worth $20 million. The Heat would have to make a lot of space to offer him the max deal. They could also try to work with the Blazers on a sign and trade. According to a source, Riley impressed the player. “Riley is good,” said the source.
Another source is saying the Rockets are still in the race, after keeping Corey Brewer and Patrick Beverley. The Rockets want to show the star forward that they have depth on the bench with Brewer and a quality defensive point guard in Beverley. This one is also complicated because they would have to do a sign and trade.
Only one team is confirmed to be out of the race and that is the New York Knicks, after the player cancelled the meeting with them. The Suns are said to be in the mix after making a cap clearing trade with the Pistons.
Who should he sign with? Which team fits him better?