LaMarcus Aldridge Signs 1-Year Contract with Nets After Spurs Buyout

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIMarch 27, 2021

San Antonio Spurs center LaMarcus Aldridge (12) during an NBA basketball game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Sue Ogrocki/Associated Press

LaMarcus Aldridge is headed to Brooklyn.

The seven-time All-Star, who was bought out by the San Antonio Spurs at the trade deadline after six seasons, signed a one-year veteran's minimum deal with the Nets on Saturday, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.

Aldridge's agent, Jeff Schwartz, confirmed to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski that his client signed with Brooklyn.

The Miami Heat were the front-runners to sign the center, but Aldridge planned to "talk with several teams," according to Wojnarowski

The 35-year-old had appeared in 21 games this season and averaged 13.7 points (his lowest since his rookie season) and 4.5 rebounds (a career low). He saw just 25.9 minutes per game, but he was limited by a hip injury and stomach illness. 

Aldridge appeared in 53 games for the Spurs last season and averaged 18.9 points and 7.4 rebounds, a year removed from his second of two consecutive All-Star selections. 

"There was no problem there. We just think this is a win-win for both LaMarcus and for the club," Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich told reporters on March 10. "So, when an opportunity arises, that'll be up to management, his agent, you know, that sort of thing. We'll all move forward."

Aldridge joins a loaded Nets team that sits second in the Eastern Conference with a 30-15 record. The superstar trio of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden has rarely played together this year due to injuries and other reasons, so the Nets' mark is undoubtedly impressive given the shorthanded roster.

Adding a player like Aldridge helps stem the tide of any loss, though, as the productive scorer and rebounder should immediately become an impact player down low. Per Wojnarowski, Aldridge is expected to see a "significant amount" of his minutes at center.

He joins the recently added Blake Griffin, the six-time All-Star whom the Nets signed on March 8.