SAN ANTONIO — LaMarcus Aldridge, now officially a former San Antonio Spur, took to social media to thank the San Antonio community for "five years of unforgettable memories."
Aldridge and the Spurs reached a buyout agreement after the NBA trade deadline passed Thursday. According to The Athletic's Shams Charania, Aldridge gave back more than $7 million in the buyout; he was due $24 million for the 2020-2021 season.
When the second half of the 2020-2021 season resumed in March, Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich announced Aldridge would not return to the team -- a mutual agreement, according to Coach Pop -- and that San Antonio's front office was working on trading Aldridge.
"He's been a great teammate, there's no problem there," Popovich said at the time. "We just think this is a win-win for both LaMarcus and for the club. When an opportunity arises, that will be up to management, his agent, that sort of thing, and we'll all move forward."
While a handful of suitors were reportedly interested in trading for the seven-time All-Star, a deal was not made.
Aldridge signed with the Spurs on July 4, 2015. In his 376-game tenure with the Spurs, Aldridge averaged 19,5 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1.25 blocks. He was named to three All-Star teams and twice named All-NBA while with the Silver and Black. The big man is also one of six Spurs players to record more than 7,000 points and 3,000 rebounds with the squad, joining some of the most legendary players to don a Spurs jersey.
As a free-agent, Aldridge reportedly has a number of suitors, with the Miami Heat considered the favorite to land the former All-Star.