The Miami Heat were always long shots to land LaMarcus Aldridge this summer as what felt like half the league went after the four-time All-Star in free agency.
That didn't stop them trying to convince Aldridge that South Florida was the right move to make, however, and team president Pat Riley did manage to get a last-minute sit-down with the star before he ultimately plumped for the San Antonio Spurs.
Unfortunately, according to Adrian Wojnarowski's in-depth look at Aldridge's decision, it appears what Riley said during that meeting actually inadvertently convinced Aldridge that San Antonio was the right fit. Not exactly the ideal outcome from a recruitment pitch.
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Aldridge, as relayed by Woj, recounted how Riley told him that he could be great, and win titles, if he was willing to take a lesser role on a team that was filled with star names.
"He was saying, ‘Hey, you might have to take a lesser role, but at the end of the day, you want to be known as a champion. Champions have to do different things," Aldridge explained.
Riley was overtly pointing out the success Aldridge could have playing alongside the likes of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Goran Dragic.
Making things clear
The problem for Riley and the Miami was that, although Aldridge was on board with the philosophy, the Heat president's words made him realize what was on offer in San Antonio.
And he had done it on the eve of a meeting the player had scheduled with Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich.
"Yeah, the things [Riley] said were definitely more positive for me coming to San Antonio,” Aldridge admitted to Yahoo.
You can certainly see things from the star's perspective. Substitute Wade, Bosh and Dragic for Duncan, Leonard and Parker and the philosophy still rings true.
Unfortunately for Miami, the Spurs are just that little bit closer to a title run at this stage of their cycle.
Heat fans: Is your team capable of a deep playoff run this year or do you need big name arrivals in 2016? Have your say in the comments below...