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#pounditThursday, December 9, 2021

Damian Lillard respects LaMarcus Aldridge for telling him decision before news broke

LaMarcus Aldridge

LaMarcus Aldridge made the Spurs among the winners of the NBA’s offseason when he joined them on a four-year deal worth $80 million. The move brought to an end his time with the Blazers, the team he spent the first nine seasons of his career playing for.

While the Spurs were seen as the favorite throughout the process, most of America found out the news of Aldridge’s decision to make it official at the same time. Former teammate Damian Lillard wasn’t in that group. He already knew what the four-time All-Star was going to do.

“We basically exchanged texts about how much admiration we have for each other,” Lillard said via Sporting News. “That change wasn’t about me. I did express that I wanted him to be back. I told him I respected his decision. I respected that he told me before the news broke and I saw it on TV.”

It’s tough to argue with the decision LaMarcus Aldridge made. There were reports he was uncomfortable with the Blazers pushing Lillard as the face of the franchise. However, based on Lillard’s comments, going to San Antonio wasn’t about him. Aldridge is from Texas and being close to family and friends was important to him. And, obviously, San Antonio gives him a great opportunity to compete for a championship.

Portland, on the other hand, will look drastically different this upcoming season, with Lillard the only starter from a year ago remaining. Wes Matthews is now with the Mavericks. Nicolas Batum was traded to the Hornets. Aldridge signed with the Spurs and Robin Lopez is now a member of the Knicks.

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