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Report: LaMarcus Aldridge ‘leaning toward’ signing with Lakers

Memphis Grizzlies v Portland Trail Blazers - Game Three

Memphis Grizzlies v Portland Trail Blazers - Game Three

NBAE/Getty Images

LaMarcus Aldridge is expected to leave Portland to pursue other opportunities as an unrestricted free agent this summer, with the Spurs being near the top of his list.

The Lakers are there, too, and a recent report suggests that L.A. may in fact be the frontrunner to retain Aldridge’s services.

From Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

Heard that LaMarcus Aldridge was leaning toward Lakers, a sign that their brand is not only back but never went away despite appearances.

Make no mistake -- Aldridge will be looking around at plenty of options, and is open to listening to pitches from any team that has the financial ability to provide him with long-term security as part of a winning situation.

But Los Angeles is appealing, for a variety of reasons. D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson should have the backcourt locked down for the foreseeable future, Kobe Bryant has at least one more season left, and Julius Randle is a promising prospect who should be fully ready to go after suffering an injury at the very beginning of last season.

Add in the fact that other free agents -- like DeAndre Jordan, for example -- may be willing to sign on as soon as another All-Star talent does the same, and it’s easy to see why the Lakers, when offering max money, could be an extremely desirable destination.