News broke earlier this week that the San Antonio Spurs were exploring trade options for LaMarcus Aldridge. ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith has clarified the situation, saying that Aldridge has actually requested a trade.
“He doesn’t believe that he’s utilized properly by Gregg Popovich,” Smith said on SportsCenter. “He thinks he’s been devalued by the Spurs in terms of their system and how he’s used.”
Smith’s full comments, including accusations that Aldridge came up “glaringly short” in big games, can be seen here:
Smith later explained on ESPN’s First Take that his Aldridge information came from some “folks in San Antonio [who] are incredibly plugged in to what’s transpiring with LaMarcus Aldridge.”
Aldridge joined San Antonio as a free agent in 2015 after playing nine seasons for the Portland Trail Blazers. He made the 2016 All-Star team in his first year with the Spurs, but averaged only 17.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game on 47.7 percent shooting last season—his lowest production since his rookie year.