Buyout from San Antonio Spurs makes star LaMarcus Aldridge free agent

By Field Level Media
Mar 17, 2018; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs power forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) reacts after being fouled and scoring a basket during the first half against the Minnesota Timberwolves at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Veteran San Antonio Spurs big man LaMarcus Aldridge became a free agent Thursday after the team bought out the remainder of his $72 million contract.

A move to the Miami Heat is viewed as most likely, multiple outlets reported, while the 6-foot-11 center is expected to explore offers from multiple teams.

Aldridge, 35, was in the final year of a three-year deal he signed in 2017. He was making $24 million this season, his 15th in the NBA, with The Athletic reporting he gave back $7.25 million in salary to facilitate the agreement.

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A former second overall draft pick by the Chicago Bulls in 2006 out of Texas, Aldridge has averaged 19.4 points and 8.3 rebounds over 1,024 career games (980 starts). A seven-time All-Star, Aldridge has played for the Portland Trail Blazers (2006-2015) and the Spurs.

He is one of six players in Spurs history to record at least 7,000 points and 3,000 rebounds with the team, joining David Robinson, Tim Duncan, George Gervin, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili.

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–Field Level Media