Yesterday, in an interview with Kerry Eggers of the Portland Tribune, LaMarcus Aldridge revealed that he would like to re-sign with the Portland Trail Blazers when his current contract expires in 2015. Aldridge is in the midst of his eighth (and best) NBA season. Assuming that he remains in Portland through the end of his contract, he will have been a Trail Blazer for nine seasons.
Hall-of-famer and 10-time NBA All-Star Clyde Drexler is the longest tenured player in Trail Blazers history. He was a Trail Blazer from the day he was drafted (June 28th, 1983) to the day his trade request was honored and he was sent to Houston (February 14th, 1995). He represented Rip City for eleven and a half seasons.
If LaMarcus Aldridge does indeed re-sign with Portland in 2015, he is likely to pass Clyde Drexler to become the longest tenured Trail Blazer ever. A 3+ year deal is not unprecedented for a 29 year old player of Aldridge’s caliber. When the day comes for him to ink his next contract (max or not), he may be penning a chapter in the history books.
There are so few players who play with one team their entire career. Look at the active veterans that have so far—Dwyane Wade, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Dirk Nowitzki, etc. That’s fantastic company to be in. Signs are strongly pointing toward LaMarcus Aldridge joining this exclusive club.
He’s approaching franchise player milestone status. Magic Johnson & Kobe Bryant will always be Laker legends, Larry Bird & Bill Russell will always be Celtic legends, just as Isiah Thomas will always be a Piston legend. The list goes on. If LaMarcus Aldridge remains a Trail Blazer for years to come, his banner will join Bill Walton’s & Clyde Drexler’s among the marquee names in the Portland rafters.