Lakers reportedly meet again with Aldridge, apologize for 1st sit-down
The LaMarcus Aldridge free-agency saga continues to take twists and turns.
One day after reportedly not being impressed with the Los Angeles Lakers’ pitch, Aldridge met with the Lakers for a second time for about 90 minutes and the team spoke entirely about how it would move forward on the court, according to ESPN.
Aldridge didn’t jell with Lakers star Kobe Bryant and the sought-after free agent disliked the team’s basketball part of its presentation, the Los Angeles Times reported after the two sides first met Wednesday.
"They want to see if they can get it right," a source briefed on the Lakers’ second meeting with Aldridge told Yahoo Sports/FOX Sports 1 NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski before Thursday’s meeting.
The Lakers apologized to Aldridge during the lastest sit-down for not giving him a more comprehensive presentation, according to ESPN. Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak, head coach Byron Scott and assistant coach Mark Madsen, who is a bridge between the team’s coaching staff and its analytics staff, attended the second meeting, according to the report.
After his meeting with the Lakers, Aldridge sat down with Miami Heat president Pat Riley, ESPN reported. The Heat, who agreed to a one-year, $20 million contract with Dwyane Wade on Thursday, would either have to shed a number of contracts to fit Aldridge under the cap or send forward Chris Bosh to the Portland Trail Blazers in a sign-and-trade deal.
The Phoenix Suns, another Aldridge suitor, traded forward Marcus Morris, guard Reggie Bullock and forward Danny Granger to the Pistons for future draft picks, Wojnarowski reported earlier Thursday. The Suns reportedly impressed Aldridge with their analytics-heavy presentation, and this move clears cap space in case he chooses Phoenix.
The New York Knicks had their meeting with Aldridge canceled once New York made it clear that it wanted Aldridge to play center, something he is opposed to, according to TNT. The Knicks also lost out on big man Greg Monroe, who reportedly will join the Milwaukee Bucks.
The San Antonio Spurs, who are considered the favorite to land the former University of Texas standout, also impressed Aldridge in their meeting. Tim Duncan told the San Antonio Express-News that he will be coming back for a 19th season. The Spurs reportedly traded Tiago Splitter, agreed to a four-year deal with guard Danny Green and a five-year deal with Kawhi Leonard on Wednesday. San Antonio is believed to have enough cap space to add Aldridge.