NBA Analyst Has Scalding Criticism of Nets Signing LaMarcus Aldridge

LaMarcus Aldridge

Getty San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge

As if the Brooklyn Nets needed any more star power, news broke on Saturday that the Nets are adding LaMarcus Aldridge after the seven-time All-Star reached a buyout agreement with the San Antonio Spurs.

The addition of Aldridge came a couple of weeks after the Nets added six-time All-Star Blake Griffin, and a few months after they added future Hall of Famer James Harden to add to a core that includes perennial All-Stars in Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

For one prominent NBA analyst, the line was crossed Saturday.

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Stephen A. Smith Sounds Off

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith viewed the Nets’ signing of Aldridge as the last straw. Their signing of Griffin was already pushing it. But by adding Aldridge, Smith thinks Brooklyn’s superteam is simply too super.
“What’s going to be next if you’re the Brooklyn Nets? I mean this is almost like buying a championship for crying out loud,” Smith said in a video he posted to Twitter.

The Nets now have six players — Durant, Irving, Harden, Griffin, Aldridge and DeAndre Jordan — with at least one All-Star Game appearance to their name. Collectively, that group has appeared in 41 All-Star Games.

It’s too much, if you ask Smith.

“What about competition? You’re just going to get everybody now? Everybody?” Smith said. “I mean I’m looking forward to the playoffs. I want competition. But if we just going to stockpile and get everybody and everybody running to Brooklyn to try to steal a championship, I mean, c’mon.”

Here’s a transcript of Smith’s 89-second rant in its entirety:

So what’s next? I mean, what, we going to get the (Lonzo) Ball boy next? We going to get Andre Drummond next? I mean we going to get — I mean I know you can’t get Lonzo Ball or Kyle Lowry or whatever, but damn. What’s going to be next if you’re the Brooklyn Nets? I mean this is almost like buying a championship for crying out loud. Blake Griffin comes. LaMarcus Aldridge has now decided to go. We don’t even know if they’re going to go after Andre Drummond next. I mean you want a championship — I got all of that. You should be the favorites. KD, James Harden, Kyrie, Lethal Weapon 3, but damn. I mean what about competition? What about competition? You’re just going to get everybody now? Everybody? I mean I’m looking forward to the playoffs. I want competition. But if we just going to stockpile and get everybody and everybody running to Brooklyn to try to steal a championship, I mean, c’mon. KD, Kyrie, James Harden — that’s cool. I get all of that. Blake Griffin couldn’t get some place else? LaMarcus Aldridge, you of all people, after all the years you spent in Portland and San Antonio, that’s what we doing now? I’ll talk to y’all Monday on First Take and Stephen A’s World. But damn. That’s just my initial reaction: damn. I like competition. I don’t want everybody on the same team.

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Aldridge Pads Brooklyn’s Depth

Aldridge, 35, last made an All-Star Game during the 2018-19 season. He’s on the downslope of a 15-year NBA career that has seen him average 19.4 points and 8.3 rebounds over 1,024 games.

Still, he’ll serve as yet another valuable depth piece for a Nets team that can’t have enough of them as it eyes a championship run later this year. The 6-foot-11 Aldridge averaged 13.7 points and 4.5 rebounds in 21 games (including 18 starts) for the Spurs earlier this season.

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