LaMarcus Aldridge Trade Rumors: Celtics, Heat Not Interested; Buyout LikelyMarch 16, 2021
The San Antonio Spurs are having trouble finding a team interested in taking LaMarcus Aldridge off of their hands.
According to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, neither the Boston Celtics nor the Miami Heat are interested, and the most likely scenario at this point is a buyout of his contract after the March 25 trade deadline.
The 35-year-old Aldridge and the Spurs mutually parted ways last week. In the final year of his contract and due a $24 million payout this season, Aldridge was having one of the worst years of his career.
Through 21 games, he averaged 13.7 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, his lowest output since he made his NBA debut in 2006-07.
According to Mannix, Boston's lack of interest in Aldridge could stem from the team's desire to save its trade exception for the right deal. The team earned a $28.5 million exception following the sign-and-trade deal that sent Gordon Hayward to the Charlotte Hornets.
"Boston won’t force a deal, with team officials seeing value in holding on to the exception into free agency," Mannix wrote, though he did note that the team is continuing to pursue Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes.
The Heat reportedly offered a package of Meyers Leonard, Avery Bradley and Maurice Harkless to the Spurs in exchange for Aldridge, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.
While neither Eastern Conference contender is interested in the deal, both teams—and the Portland Trail Blazers—will be back in the mix if Aldridge ends up being bought out of his contract, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.