NBA Trade Rumors: Spurs Taking Calls on LaMarcus Aldridge, DeRozan, Gay, More

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMarch 4, 2021

San Antonio Spurs' LaMarcus Aldridge (12) stands next to DeMar DeRozan during the second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, in San Antonio. San Antonio won 154-147 in double overtime. (AP Photo/Darren Abate)
Darren Abate/Associated Press

The San Antonio Spurs are reportedly listening to offers for all of their veteran players who are impending free agents.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Spurs are taking calls on LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMar DeRozan, Rudy Gay, Trey Lyles and Patty Mills ahead of the March 25 trade deadline.

After missing the playoffs last season for the first time since the 1996-97 campaign, the Spurs have been among the NBA's most pleasant surprises in 2020-21, as they sit sixth in the Western Conference at 18-13.

Of the five players for whom the Spurs are reportedly fielding offers, four are at least 31, while Lyles is 25.

All of the veterans have played significant roles in San Antonio's success this season, but head coach Gregg Popovich has a good mix with plenty of younger players contributing as well.

Dejounte Murray, Keldon Johnson, Derrick White and Lonnie Walker are the Spurs' Nos. 2, 3, 6 and 7 scorers this season, and none of them are older than 26.

Those players are the future of San Antonio basketball, but if the team wants to have a shot at making a deep playoff run this season, the likes of DeRozan, Aldridge, Mills and Gay will likely be key.

DeRozan has been the Spurs' best all-around player this season, as he leads them with 20.0 points per game, while also contributing 7.3 assists and 4.9 rebounds. His scoring is at its lowest point since he averaged 18.1 points per game with the Toronto Raptors in 2012-13, but the four-time All-Star has taken his playmaking skills to the next level.

Aldridge, 35, is in the midst of his worst season since his rookie campaign of 2006-07, when he was a member of the Portland Trail Blazers. He has been limited to 21 games and is averaging just 13.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game, although he is still fourth on the team in scoring.

Meanwhile, Mills, Gay and Lyles have all been major contributors off the bench. Mills is averaging 13.3 points and 2.7 assists, Gay is putting up 11.2 points and 5.2 rebounds, and Lyles is averaging 5.3 points and 3.7 rebounds.

It seems unlikely that the Spurs will be able to re-sign all five of their impending free agents, meaning they risk losing one or more of them for nothing if they don't make a trade. At the same time, trading any of them would adversely affect San Antonio's depth and chances of doing some damage come playoff time.

The Spurs must weigh their chances of being a contender this season. If they don't believe they have a chance to go the distance, some extremely valuable players could be available ahead of the trade deadline.