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Why rumored Aldridge trade makes no sense for Warriors

/ by Brian Witt
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The Warriors hold the No. 2 overall pick in the upcoming 2020 NBA Draft on Nov. 18, and they're going to use it in one of two ways. Either they'll use it themselves to add one of the best prospects available, or they'll trade the pick to another team as part of a package to acquire a veteran capable of lifting Golden State to the next level.

If the Washington Wizards made Bradley Beal available, you can be sure the Warriors would be willing to include the No. 2 pick -- and whatever else within reason -- to acquire him. The same obviously goes for Giannis Antetokounmpo or any other current NBA All-Star that potentially is on the block.

San Antonio Spurs big man LaMarcus Aldridge, though? That's not gonna cut it. Not even close.

There certainly has been no shortage of rumors that the Warriors have been involved in over the last several months, and they continue to emerge with the draft and start of next season rapidly approaching. ESPN's Zach Lowe heard a new one this week, and as he explained, it doesn't make sense for Golden State.

"Someone within the league today texted me, 'Hey there's a little bit of buzz about No. 2 to San Antonio for LaMarcus Aldridge and No. 11,'" Lowe said on the most recent episode of the "Lowe Post" podcast. "And obviously there would have to be salary going out. And my response was, that's crazy. The Warriors should not do that. You don't trade the No. 2 pick for LaMarcus Aldridge, and I don't care if you're getting No. 11."

 

Aldridge, 35, will make $24 million in the final year of his current contract this coming season. As such, in order to acquire him in a trade with the Spurs, the Warriors would have to include an outgoing salary of similar value. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson absolutely aren't going anywhere, which leaves Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins as the only Warriors players that would qualify.

Green is the heartbeat of the team and captain of the defense. Golden State would have to be highly motivated to send him elsewhere, and Aldridge isn't nearly enticing enough. As for Wiggins, the Warriors already are short on wings, and losing him would further exacerbate that. Not to mention, the Dubs are counting on Wiggins to either become their fourth star player or directly help them acquire one. Aldridge was a star for many seasons, but he isn't one anymore.

On top of the fact that Aldridge isn't worth giving up everything that was included in that proposed trade, he also doesn't fit in stylistically with how the Warriors want to play. He is a ball-stopper on offense and often an aloof defender. Yes, his proficiency shooting from the perimeter would be a nice addition, but not at the cost of everything else that would be thrown off.

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Oh, and did I mention, Aldridge underwent shoulder surgery in June? Even if he's fully healed by the start of the season, he doesn't offer the longevity the Warriors surely would be looking for if giving up so much value.

Though there is very little certainty as to what the Warriors are going to do with the No. 2 pick, we can be sure it won't be used to acquire Aldridge, or at least not directly. As Lowe explained, that just wouldn't make any sense.

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