The San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns are the frontrunners to nab free agent LaMarcus Aldridge, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Ken Berger of CBS Sports says the Spurs and the Suns are the likely location for Aldridge, but notes that the Portland Trail Blazers are still in the race, too.
Aldridge, who has been all but guaranteed to leave the Trail Blazers after nine seasons with the franchise, has also had meetings with the Los Angeles Lakers (twice) and Miami Heat. Plus, Damian Lillard tried to convince Aldridge to stay in Portland. It appears that those meetings were for naught, however, with the Spurs and Suns now leading the way to sign the big man.
The Spurs have always been in the picture, and after they traded Tiago Splitter to the Atlanta Hawks, it seemed like the signing of Aldridge would follow shortly. Then the Suns entered the picture. They traded forwards Marcus Morris, Danny Granger and guard Reggie Bullock to the Detroit Pistons for a 2020 second-round pick. The move cleared up $20 million in cap space, which might be enough to entice Aldridge to Phoenix.
Aldridge would be a big boost for both teams, who can continue to pitch their franchises while they wait on one of the best remaining free agents.