Aldridge Signs Off on Landry
LaMarcus Aldridge sees Carl Landry as a fit in Portland too.
PORTLAND – The New Orleans Hornets’ free agent, Carl Landry, recently told SLAMonline that he thought he’d be a good fit with the Portland Trail Blazers and was interested in signing with the organization once the lockout ended.
LaMarcus Aldridge concurs with Landry and feels such an addition would drastically improve the Blazers’ current roster.
“That’s big of him to speak out and I’m glad he spoke out and said he wants to play with us,” Aldridge told SLAMonline. “He’s a good player and I definitely feel like he can help us immediately.”
As the new face of the franchise, Aldridge finds himself in unfamiliar territory. He’s now a player others look up to and want to play with. Seldom has an athlete voiced his desire publicly to play for the Blazers, and the emergence of Aldridge has a lot to do with that.
After word got out of Landry’s comments, there was an overwhelming uproar of disbelief and optimism throughout the city of Portland. There were also those skeptics that bashed the idea of Landry and Aldridge coexisting together.
“Landry’s a really good player and good players know how to fit in,” Aldridge said. “Wouldn’t be a problem at all.”
Aldridge, who happens to be the Blazers’ representative for the NBA Player’s Union, said he hates to think about such transactions happening due to the lockout being at a standstill.
He also knows the Blazers are committed to a healthy size salary for next season—$73.4 million to be exact—and acknowledged it would be difficult to orchestrate a deal to bring in Landry who may find a more lucrative deal elsewhere.
In the meantime, Aldridge says he’s working out, taking it easy, and focused on becoming a better leader on and off the court as if the NBA season is starting on time.
After being forced to be the focal point once Brandon Roy went down to have double knee surgery, Aldridge recognized he was going to have to improve his leadership qualities.
“I grew a lot in leadership, vocally and in closing out games,” Aldridge said. “I spoke up more last year and I’m working on being better at it. Next year should be even easier as I do it more often.”
Next year may find Aldridge overseas. He told The Oregonian that he’s thought about playing abroad and said his agent is looking into it.
Whenever a new collective bargaining agreement is reached, it’s clear the Blazers’ future is in good hands. Portland has discovered a hidden gem as Aldridge has shown that he’s an All-Star player who’s exempt from the injury bug, and that he’s someone who will attract and recruit free agents to the Pacific Northwest.