So much for LaMarcus Aldridge not requesting a trade from the Portland Trail Blazers. According to Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com, Aldridge's camp met with Portland general manager Neil Olshey in Las Vegas to discuss several different trade scenarios.
A source told Haynes the meeting was productive and that both sides were focused on doing what's best for either party. Whatever that means.
UPDATE: Thursday, July 18, at 8:28 p.m. ET by Grant Hughes
According to Aldridge, himself, the rumors that his representatives met with the Blazers in Las Vegas simply aren't true.
I guess we making up stuff now huh..... Been in Dallas for going on two weeks. Smh— Lamarcus Aldridge (@aldridge_12) July 18, 2013
With as much smoke as there's been lately, it's hard to believe that there's no fire. By personally weighing in, Aldridge is doing his best to douse the whatever flames there might be.
---End of update---
Previously, Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald reported that Aldridge wanted out of Portland, and his preference was to be dealt to the Chicago Bulls. However, the player himself denied making any trade request:
It seems he's saying a lot more these days.
The All-Star power forward's response to the initial trade rumors was far too convenient. He waited until after the draft to refute allegations, which is no coincidence.
Had the Blazers opted to shop him aggressively, he could have been dealt leading into draft night. Since he wasn't, coming out and discrediting the rumors was his only option.
Aldridge, 27, has two years and approximately $29.3 million remaining on his current contract. Though there is bound to be a strong market for his services, Haynes writes that the Blazers are in no rush to trade him.
Olshey's main concern is getting adequate value in return for the All-Star forward. Trading him for a collection of draft picks is not believed to be an option.
Which team will Aldridge begin next season with?
Thus far, Portland's overtures have been rebuffed by every team it has contacted, according to Haynes' report, including the New Orleans Pelicans (Anthony Davis), Minnesota Timberwolves (Kevin Love), Los Angeles Clippers (Blake Griffin), Atlanta Hawks (Al Horford) and Chicago Bulls (Joakim Noah).
Barring the materialization of an overwhelmingly appealing proposal, Haynes says it's likely this saga spills over into next season.
Aldridge could always rescind his trade request, even if he isn't ready to publicly admit it. The situation certainly looks like it is well beyond "take-backs" at this point.