Looking back, it was really the most likely outcome. Once LaMarcus Aldridge made up his mind to leave Portland, joining the Spurs made more sense than any other option. There’s no better coach in the game than Gregg Popovich, he’ll return to his home state, and he’ll have a chance to be the first option on a team with a genuine chance to win a ring.
Still, there were enough twists and turns in the proceedings, including the Lakers’ farcical pitch meeting and the Suns’ left-field pursuit, to keep it interesting before we wound up right where pretty much everyone thought we would.
Saturday morning, Aldridge tweeted this:
I'm happy to say I'm going home to Texas and will be a Spur!! I'm excited to join the team and be close to my family and friends.
— Lamarcus Aldridge (@aldridge_12) July 4, 2015
As you’d expect, his new teammates quickly welcomed him aboard:
Welcome to @aldridge_12 ! So happy he's going to be a Spur !!
— Tony Parker (@tonyparker) July 4, 2015
Uh oh! Lol
— Danny Green (@DGreen_14) July 4, 2015
While the Spurs should be deadly next year, spare a thought for Damian Lillard, who has now seen the other four Blazers starters from last year depart, as well as his backup, Steve Blake. I don’t want to declare Portland’s run over, but losing Aldridge, Nic Batum, Wes Matthews, and Robin Lopez isn’t the sort of thing normal teams bounce back from.
Damian Lillard after losing Wes Mathews, Nic Batum, Aldirdge, & Robin Lopez… pic.twitter.com/ilxDURkYsm
— ★BALLUPNBA★ (@BallUpNBA) July 4, 2015
Of course, Lillard isn’t the type to let anything get to him.
— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) July 4, 2015