SAN ANTONIO – Former Spurs stars Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green are returning to the AT&T Center on Thursday night in their first time playing against the Spurs as Toronto Raptors.
While their return is guaranteed to be an eventful one, LaMarcus Aldridge says, to him, it's just another game -- one he wishes he could simply sit back and enjoy with some popcorn.
"Give me some popcorn. I just want to watch it," Aldridge joked after the Spurs beat the Celtics on Monday. "If I could get some popcorn and watch it, I would, but I might have to play."
Aldridge said he can't speak for DeMar DeRozan but is sure it'll be an emotional matchup.
"I know it's definitely not another game (to DeRozan), for sure," Aldridge said.
The Spurs traded Leonard and Green to the Toronto Raptors in July for DeRozan and second-year center Jakob Poeltl. A protected 2019 first-round pick for the Spurs was also included in the trade.
The move caught DeRozan by surprise as he said Raptors officials had informed him that he was safe from being traded. DeRozan had also always said he wanted to retire a Raptor.
In the immediate aftermath of the trade, DeRozan was vocal about how he felt betrayed by Raptors staff, including Raptors President Masai Ujiri.
DeRozan told reporters in July his relationship with Ujiri was "done," adding that he had no plans to talk with him again. He also said that he'd be circling the date of the first matchup between his new and old teams.
But on Monday, DeRozan played it cool, saying he hadn't even thought about the game.
"I wish I had something cool to say," DeRozan said. "I haven't thought about it at all."
DeRozan joked that he would think of something clever to say about the matchup by game time Thursday.
The Spurs, currently ranked eighth in the Western Conference, are coming off a dominant 120-111 win over the Boston Celtics. The Raptors hold the second spot in the Eastern Conference and are also coming off a win over the Chicago Bulls.
Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. at the AT&T Center. There are still tickets available for the game.