Whether they decide to remain competitive or undergo a rebuilding process, it seems like LaMarcus Aldridge's departure from the San Antonio Spurs is inevitable. Even if he manages to finish the 2020-21 NBA season with the team, it remains a big question if the Spurs are willing to spend a huge amount of money to bring him back in the 2021 free agency. With his age and deteriorating performance, most people believe the Spurs are better off finding a younger replacement for Aldridge before the 2021 trade deadline.
In a recent article, Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report created a list of upgrade trade targets for every team in the league. For the Spurs, Swartz believes they should consider targeting Andre Drummond of the Cleveland Cavaliers, John Collins of the Atlanta Hawks, and Julius Randle of the New York Knicks to replace Aldridge. All those big men would undeniably be an upgrade over Aldridge in the Spurs' frontcourt.
Like Aldridge, Drummond is also set to become an unrestricted free agent in the 2021 offseason. However, at 27, giving Drummond a lucrative contract in free agency would be more reasonable for the Spurs. Bringing a double-double machine like him to San Antonio could give them much-needed improvement in terms of rebounding.
"Drummond is putting up 17.9 points, 13.8 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.2 blocks in only 29.4 minutes per game for the Cavaliers this season. The 27-year-old remains one of the league's premier forces on the glass. The Cavs should be willing to part with the free-agent-to-be after trading for Jarrett Allen, and Drummond would serve as an upgrade over Aldridge."
Although Collins and Randle don't have playoff experience like Drummond, they both possess one skill he doesn't have -- the ability to space the floor. Collins and Randle also better fit the timeline of the Spurs' young core of Dejounte Murray, Keldon Johnson, and Lonnie Walker IV.
"Collins would cost more in a deal, but he's a superior outside shooter who's four years younger than Drummond. He'd also help balance out a Spurs team that's loaded with perimeter talent. Randle is the best passer of the bunch and perhaps the best combination of rebounder and outside shooter."Collins will also become a free agent after the 2020-21 NBA season, but it would be easier for the Spurs to retain him than Drummond. As a restricted free agent, the only thing they need to do to acquire him is to match the offers from other NBA teams.