Portland Trail Blazers’ power forward LaMarcus Aldridge has been an excellent player for some time. [category-related]
However, it seems like he never got his just do until the team drafted point guard Damian Lillard and two turned the Trail Blazers into a winner this season. The Trail Blazers went 54-28 and earned the fifth-seed in the Western Conference. They then defeated the Houston Rockets in six games in the first round before losing to the San Antonio Spurs in five games.
The biggest task for the Blazers besides improving the talent around Aldridge and Lillard will be locking Aldridge down to a long term deal. At one time, it looked like he was sure bet to leave, but now the Trail Blazers are a heavy favorite to re-sign him.
Blazers’ Edge takes a look at why Aldridge would sign an extension.
Here’s the strategy: Aldridge signs an extension and then becomes a free agent later than if he lets his current deal run out. Why? Because right now his “maximum contract amount” is limited by the fact that he will have 9 years of experience once his current deal is completed. The “ceiling” for Aldridge is limited to 30% of the adjusted cap figure, which applies to players with between 6 and 9 years of NBA experience. However, once a player has 10 or more years of experience, his “ceiling” increases to 35% of the adjusted cap figure. (For a more detailed explanation of this topic, please refer to Larry Coon’s FAQ #16)
You probably see where I’m going with this. Aldridge’s maximum contract ceiling is limited in 2015 if he signs as a free agent. But after just one more year of play, his ceiling for signing a new deal jumps dramatically.
Aldridge averaged 23.2 points, 11.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.0 blocks per game last season.