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  1. #601
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    Why? This isn't a roster that's trying to contend. It's a roster trying to develop their core prospects while being more respectable on the court. Having a weakness that a good team could exploit in a seven-game series doesn't really matter. What matters is in 2026 when the team is actually trying to figure out if it can contend, will Sheppard, Vassell, Williams and Wemby be stronger for having spent the previous two years with those vets? I think they would. Then you add the three-and-D forward and either let DMDR stay on as the sixth man or move on. That's assuming Sochan never figures out how to shoot and moves on in 2026 as well, but him having two years to focus on that rather than on playing PG, being the designated stopper of the first unit or any of the other high-minded ambitions he's been asked to meet should be good for him.
    I'm a believer that it's much harder to develop players on bad teams. Especially teams that are a bad fit.
    I'd like to see if Devin can develop his playmaking skills and Sheppard would also need to be tested in that department.
    Williams also has some point forward potential.
    Wemby likes handling the ball.
    What's Demar's purpose, then?

    Veterans I'd like to add are high character guys that don't really need the ball. Like Barnes I mentioned yesterday.
    Or Batum if Wemby can convince him to play another year.
    Maybe a veteran point guard if we don't draft a point guard in this draft.
    I dont' want any veteran 20ppg scorers.

  2. #602
    Machacarredes Chinook's Avatar
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    I'm a believer that it's much harder to develop players on bad teams. Especially teams that are a bad fit.
    You say this and go on to describe a bad team. A team that relies on guys who don't know how to play in the NBA to have the ball in their hands is a bad team. It's a far bigger factor as to why the Spurs have been horrible for years than the talent level of the players in the league. I know the meme answer as to why the offense stuttered so much was that no one on the Spurs knew how to throw a lob. That was never true. The problem with the team's offense is that it started off the year relying on Sochan to be the point guard and had Johnson playing the primary play-making role. The reason why Jones starting shored up so many issues isn't that Jones is uber-talented; it's that he actually knows how to do his half of play-making. If you eschew that for Williams and Reed learning on the job, and you get the first part of last season all over again.

    Guys need to start learning how to play roles. Basically every prospect in the last two decades had to go through some bull where they had the ball forced in his hands so he could do things that were not his strength to the detriment of fundamental skills like shooting and defense. That has to stop. If Williams ends up being a play-maker, it's find to explore that in a few years after he's already put in the team to make sure his shot translates and that he's big/strong enough to defend NBA forwards. He should be just shooting right now. Sheppard needs to learn how to be an NBA point-guard, but he also needs to learn how the NBA moves and where his place is going to be in it. That's why having an experienced ball-handler next to him is a plus. He also gets to save energy for defense. Wemby will get the ball plenty, but no NBA player should be so ball-needy that he can't play with another play-maker. Victor is just as much of a unicorn off the ball as he is on it, and if he learns to play with DeRozan, he'll have a much easier time fitting in with his actual Robin in a couple of years.

    Veterans I'd like to add are high character guys that don't really need the ball. Like Barnes I mentioned yesterday.
    See to me, this is exactly wrong. They don't need guys who can't provide any resistance to their improvement. It's not that Barnes is bad, but he doesn't replace DeRozan -- he just takes Williams' spot in the starting lineup without helping the flow. The benefits of DeRozan just go unexploited while Williams or Sochan again has to carry a load they wouldn't be asked to carry on a competent roster.

    So yes, I 100-percent agree that it's much harder to develop players on bad teams and with bad fits. But bad teams aren't bad because they don't have talent -- a true lack of talent is very rare in today's league. They're bad because they focus too much on acquiring young players and not enough on building a structure to promote their growth and weed out the duds. If you look around at the bad teams, you'll find clumps of high picks who play similar positions but haven't seemed to improve at all. This is how they become those teams. IF the Spurs want to avoid that, they need to draw a line in the sand and tell their young guys, "Cross this line or go home. We're not going to coddle you anymore or give you undeserved minutes. We're trying to win games now. Earn your spot or be replaced. We have too many picks to worry about it."

  3. #603
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    You say this and go on to describe a bad team. A team that relies on guys who don't know how to play in the NBA to have the ball in their hands is a bad team. It's a far bigger factor as to why the Spurs have been horrible for years than the talent level of the players in the league. I know the meme answer as to why the offense stuttered so much was that no one on the Spurs knew how to throw a lob. That was never true. The problem with the team's offense is that it started off the year relying on Sochan to be the point guard and had Johnson playing the primary play-making role. The reason why Jones starting shored up so many issues isn't that Jones is uber-talented; it's that he actually knows how to do his half of play-making. If you eschew that for Williams and Reed learning on the job, and you get the first part of last season all over again.
    Imo, it's different when someone like Sheppard is trying to develop his point guard skills compared to Pop randomly experimenting with Jeremy.
    And if we draft Sheppard, I'd be willing to bet he doesn't start right away.

    Other than playmaking, our two biggest issues were perimeter defense and 3pt shooting.
    I just wouldn't be able to whitstand another season of traffic cone Demar. And he's even older now.

    See to me, this is exactly wrong. They don't need guys who can't provide any resistance to their improvement. It's not that Barnes is bad, but he doesn't replace DeRozan -- he just takes Williams' spot in the starting lineup without helping the flow. The benefits of DeRozan just go unexploited while Williams or Sochan again has to carry a load they wouldn't be asked to carry on a competent roster.
    Again, defense and shooting.

    So yes, I 100-percent agree that it's much harder to develop players on bad teams and with bad fits. But bad teams aren't bad because they don't have talent
    Agreed, often times it's coaching and rosters that don't fit together.

    a true lack of talent is very rare in today's league
    And yet we lack talent.
    Take the best player out out every roster and Spurs were arguably the worst team in the league. Top3 worst, best case scenario.

    They're bad because they focus too much on acquiring young players and not enough on building a structure to promote their growth and weed out the duds.
    But our roster was mostly duds.

    If you look around at the bad teams, you'll find clumps of high picks who play similar positions but haven't seemed to improve at all. This is how they become those teams.
    That's why I'm advocating against another year in the lottery. We'll just descend into the territory of losing being acceptable.

    IF the Spurs want to avoid that, they need to draw a line in the sand and tell their young guys, "Cross this line or go home. We're not going to coddle you anymore or give you undeserved minutes. We're trying to win games now. Earn your spot or be replaced. We have too many picks to worry about it."
    Agreed.
    I just don't think Demar is the guy to get.

    I wouldn't be against CP3 I detest.
    I wouldn't be against Klay I also dislike.
    I wouldn't be against PG13, obviously.
    I wouldn't be against any cheap veterans I mentioned.
    But I just don't want a no-3 no-D, 35 year old, despite him being a high character guy and a good locker room presence.

  4. #604
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    Simple steps to make an ideal off season

    4 - Sheppard
    8 - Holland

    2nd round mix and match: Mogbo, Chomche, AJay Mitc , Juan Nunez, Klintman, Scheierman, Dunn, Dadiet

    Caproom - Patrick Williams rfa sheet or sign and trade or just roll it over. Maybe steal Melton who would probably cost the same.

    Most importantly, if Sheppard is gone at 4, I would go

    4- Holland
    8- Dillingham

    Maaaaaybe Carter instead of Dillingham

    The constants though are Sheppard and Holland

    Holland has so much potential I think that people are missing as they get hung up on the shooting and the state of the Ignite. In the NBA now you do need big strong wings on defense. Jaylen Brown was a better cover for Luka because of his strength and motor, something McDaniels couldn't match despite being taller and longer. He just didn't have the strength to not get bumped off by Luka. Vassell would have the same problem. Keldon isn't guarding anyone, even Sochan might be better used against Kyrie to stay with him and smother him.

    Holland has the size, the strength, the length, the bulk, the bulk (currently listed over 10 pounds heavier than Jaden McDaniels for instance) and that incredible motor that Brown showed in the finals

    Add in everything else and if the shooting comes around he's an ideal SF.. able to drive, to cut, to playmake some, crush in transition, create defensive events, I can see it coming together.

    Add Sheppard to that with his incredible transition passing, the event creation on defense (and I do believe his POA defense will improve), the remarkable shooting ... It's a dream come true. Teams are already so discombobulated and confused trying to account for Wemby that it's the perfect setup for a disruptor like Sheppard to get in there and take advantage with steals as teams are trying to move the ball to get Wemby moved out of the play.

  5. #605
    The Dude minds DPG21920's Avatar
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    The Spurs would need to send out $22,293,104 to match Grant. That's a much harder ask than then $18, 367, 920 they're sending out in the DeRozan deal. That would mean adding two more cheap players or swapping in a rotation player. It's a much bigger talent drain for what I would consider to be a worse player and worse contract. Grant is signed for four more years rather than DeRozan's two, which is a negative in this case. The previous scenario basically gave the Spurs a reset button in 2026 with DeRozan's, Richardson's, Collins', Sochan's and Wesley's deals all expiring or having options. Having Grant instead with $70 Million left on his contract is much more restricting.

    I've never hated Grant, and still don't. But it's not a minor swap to add him in. It would require a completely different type of off-season, one where the Spurs feel they have a team they could more strongly commit to for four years rather than the transitional/developmental roster this scenario proposed. If you're one of those people wanting to trade for Cunningham and maxing him, for example, then maybe you use some of the salary difference to bring in Grant. I might try a mock off-season built around that. We've still got a few days to kill before a lot of hypotheticals get rendered moot.
    Perhaps, but to me Grant fits much much better and doesnt cause the issues that DeRozan does. Im willing to pay for that because for the first two years Id rather have Grant and then I think when theres 2 years left on Grants deal hes trade able as you said.

    And ya, my idea would probably be using Keldon in this deal to shift some of that money to Grant vs paying it to Keldon + DeRozan

    But it was just an idea.

    What do you think about my aggressive rookie framework where SA adds 4 from this draft.

  6. #606
    Machacarredes Chinook's Avatar
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    Imo, it's different when someone like Sheppard is trying to develop his point guard skills compared to Pop randomly experimenting with Jeremy.
    And if we draft Sheppard, I'd be willing to bet he doesn't start right away.
    My comments were directed at the suggestion that the Spurs should be trying to have Williams handle the ball because he has some "potential" there. The Spurs have been using that logic to hinder players' development for years now. Sheppard would need to learn to play PG, and DeRozan or a similar ball-handling scorer would act as training wheels while he does that. Vassell being able to run the PnR would help too. But if the starting lineup is relying on a player who struggles to pass the ball without completely stopping his movement, then it will look horrible again. Pop would be justified in going with Jones instead, which means the spacing situation becomes more complicated once again.

    Other than playmaking, our two biggest issues were perimeter defense and 3pt shooting.
    This is why the Spurs are drafting and starting two of the best shooters for their positions in this scenario, both of whom help with the defense. Considering how most of the other defensive prospects are mediocre to horrible shooters, this is probably the best splitting of the difference they can get through that avenue.

    And yet we lack talent.
    Take the best player out out every roster and Spurs were arguably the worst team in the league. Top3 worst, best case scenario.
    But they don't actually. That's meme talk. Their issue isn't talent -- it's realized talent. That comes from basically every player being put on the "positionless/playmaking/"Beautiful Game" track rather than being taught to play their positions and build NBA skills. It's not just Sochan who was put in a position where he learned luxury skills over fundamentals. Vassell is a proto-star in that he had developed the ability to hit some difficult shots that would serve him well as a closer, and his play-making is really intriguing as a top option on a good team. However, his shot is inconsistent, and his defense has regressed? Why? Why is it that basically every prospect gets worse or stays the same at shooting? Why to guys who've been in the league for years not know how to play defense? It's not because they all lack that capacity. It's because for some reason the Spurs can't teach those skills.

    I fully believe by the end of this week there will be four or five players who could be key contributors to future Spurs contender. I believe just as strongly that the second-best player for that contender will not be on the roster. So no, I don't want the Spurs to continue down the track of training their prospects for roles they shouldn't play. Bringing in a guy like DeRozan to come in and meet the need for a second star for a couple of years without breaking the bank is the best way to stop that cycle.

    Agreed.
    I just don't think Demar is the guy to get.
    I am not trying to make you like any specific player, obviously. You can like who you like. But CP3 and Thompson are very different players than DeRozan, and they fit with a different roster than the one this scenario covers. Those other rosters could be viable or even better, but the number of proven play-making wings is pretty small, and they tend to not be affordable. Getting one who's older is a bonus because you aren't trying to make them a part of your future. You can just sign them to be who they are and then move on.

  7. #607
    Machacarredes Chinook's Avatar
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    Perhaps, but to me Grant fits much much better and doesnt cause the issues that DeRozan does. Im willing to pay for that because for the first two years Id rather have Grant and then I think when theres 2 years left on Grants deal hes trade able as you said.

    And ya, my idea would probably be using Keldon in this deal to shift some of that money to Grant vs paying it to Keldon + DeRozan

    But it was just an idea.
    I would disagree that Grant fits better, and I wouldn't assume he's going to be tradeable making a ton of money in his 30s. I in particular wouldn't say he's tradeable for the cap space the Spurs are giving up. Adding Keldon and creating another hole to lock up that money for four more years also doesn't feel create. I certainly wouldn't trade the fifth-overall pick for Jerami Grant, and if that's Johnson's worth, he shouldn't be getting used as a throw-in here. That said, who knows what will come down the pipeline for the Spurs, and Grant has a role he can play for the right team. The Spurs being that team would require some more moving parts, in my opinion.

    What do you think about my aggressive rookie framework where SA adds 4 from this draft.
    I wouldn't be a huge fan of trading so much, especially for three guards and an SF. Three players in the top 10 are sneakily expensive, and I'm not panicking if the Spurs can only get one of Risacher, Castle or Sheppard. It's okay to lose guys. Carter, Dillingham, Holland, Buzelis -- there are plenty of guys. I have expressed interest in the team acquiring a later first, because I think there's decent value in the 20s that may not be there in the 30s. But that's just a way to move up a few slots and snag Smith, Holmes, da Silva or Klintman.

    I do not like the idea of trading Keldon like this at all, even though I think getting a top-five pick for him would be a win on value. I've said before that I want the team to stop losing at this point, so trading one of the few rotation-caliber players and marginalizing a second just to load up on rookies in an ambiguous class doesn't feel like a great direction from me.

  8. #608
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    Going in a relatively slow build fashion...

    Draft Sheppard at 4,
    Trade 8 and the Charlotte protected pick for 6, draft Castle. (I think this is an overpay in terms of assets to move up 2 spots, but Castle and Sheppard are two of my top 3, and I don't think there's any reasonable chance of that conveying).
    Trade 35, 48 and a future second (pick a year where Phoenix has 0 picks) to Phoenix (pick #22, to occur after the draft pick is made for Stepien reasons), draft Tyler Smith.

    FA: Trade Malaki Branham, and a second round pick to Cleveland for Isaac Okoro (S&T at about 14/15m pa).

    Waive DeVonte Graham for 2.85m.

    Sheppard / Tre / Blake
    Vassell / Castle
    Okoro / Keldon / Champagnie
    Sochan / Smith
    Wemby / Collins / Bassey

    Still probably need a front court upgrade. One idea would be turning the DeVonte waive into another S&T (Bulls for Patrick Williams? using the Bulls pick?, though if you did that you'd probably opt for Kel'el Ware over Tyler Smith as Smith and Williams are a bit redundant).

    I think the clear downside of that is that you're not getting experienced (7 - 10 + years) players as leaders, but the roster construction works decently (3 backcourt shooters, Good on ball defense options, continuing with the offense as multi ball handlers with shooting) and you're not using up a ton of assets in improving around Wemby.

  9. #609
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    Going in a relatively slow build fashion...

    Draft Sheppard at 4,
    Trade 8 and the Charlotte protected pick for 6, draft Castle. (I think this is an overpay in terms of assets to move up 2 spots, but Castle and Sheppard are two of my top 3, and I don't think there's any reasonable chance of that conveying).
    Trade 35, 48 and a future second (pick a year where Phoenix has 0 picks) to Phoenix (pick #22, to occur after the draft pick is made for Stepien reasons), draft Tyler Smith.

    FA: Trade Malaki Branham, and a second round pick to Cleveland for Isaac Okoro (S&T at about 14/15m pa).

    Waive DeVonte Graham for 2.85m.

    Sheppard / Tre / Blake
    Vassell / Castle
    Okoro / Keldon / Champagnie
    Sochan / Smith
    Wemby / Collins / Bassey

    Still probably need a front court upgrade. One idea would be turning the DeVonte waive into another S&T (Bulls for Patrick Williams? using the Bulls pick?, though if you did that you'd probably opt for Kel'el Ware over Tyler Smith as Smith and Williams are a bit redundant).

    I think the clear downside of that is that you're not getting experienced (7 - 10 + years) players as leaders, but the roster construction works decently (3 backcourt shooters, Good on ball defense options, continuing with the offense as multi ball handlers with shooting) and you're not using up a ton of assets in improving around Wemby.
    Do we really think Okoro can be had for those assets and that Price?

  10. #610
    The Dude minds DPG21920's Avatar
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    I would disagree that Grant fits better, and I wouldn't assume he's going to be tradeable making a ton of money in his 30s. I in particular wouldn't say he's tradeable for the cap space the Spurs are giving up. Adding Keldon and creating another hole to lock up that money for four more years also doesn't feel create. I certainly wouldn't trade the fifth-overall pick for Jerami Grant, and if that's Johnson's worth, he shouldn't be getting used as a throw-in here. That said, who knows what will come down the pipeline for the Spurs, and Grant has a role he can play for the right team. The Spurs being that team would require some more moving parts, in my opinion.



    I wouldn't be a huge fan of trading so much, especially for three guards and an SF. Three players in the top 10 are sneakily expensive, and I'm not panicking if the Spurs can only get one of Risacher, Castle or Sheppard. It's okay to lose guys. Carter, Dillingham, Holland, Buzelis -- there are plenty of guys. I have expressed interest in the team acquiring a later first, because I think there's decent value in the 20s that may not be there in the 30s. But that's just a way to move up a few slots and snag Smith, Holmes, da Silva or Klintman.

    I do not like the idea of trading Keldon like this at all, even though I think getting a top-five pick for him would be a win on value. I've said before that I want the team to stop losing at this point, so trading one of the few rotation-caliber players and marginalizing a second just to load up on rookies in an ambiguous class doesn't feel like a great direction from me.
    I would say don’t get so fixated on the exact players but more that overall construct. Maybe its 2 wings and 2 guards or 2 guards a wing and a Center etc…its more about value and bringing 4 rookies in etc…

    I don’t honestly “want” to trade Keldon, but being able to have him fully absorbed offsets that expensive salary of 2 more firsts and spurs aren’t giving up core picks here (keeping all their own and all of ATL etc..).

    But biggest thing on Keldon is if he’s not a fit as a starter and you can get someone that has the same scoring upside, but can defend/hit 3s it changes the flexibility of the whole 6th man thing where they can also start and truly fit well and not tank the defense etc…

    But of course I highly doubt SA would bring in 4 rookies, but I would be happy with 3 (Risacher, Carter and Castle for example) leaving room for going after OG with the extra cap space by DET absorbing Keldon full deal alongside giving SA legit value for Keldon (pick 5)

  11. #611
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    Do we really think Okoro can be had for those assets and that Price?
    I think it's semi realistic - price is the right range for a 5th starter / bench piece (though it might be a few million low). He'd only be available if Cleveland wasn't looking to keep him, the sign and trade isn't meant to be exact value in a player for player swap, more of them getting something (I don't think super high of Branham, but something, has shown scoring flashes, and the Ohio / Cleveland connection might help). Agree it's not a balanced trade in terms of assets, but as a sign and trade, I don't think it needs to be (or generally is).

  12. #612
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    So a couple of final mock off-seasons before the draft renders most of the speculation moot. There's one more I'll try to squeeze out tomorrow, but I wanted to get this one in today.


    Trades:


    Spurs trade Keldon Johnson, Zach Collins, Devonte Graham, 4, 8, ATL25, CHI25 and ATL27 for Cade Cunningham, 14 and Jerami Grant
    Blazers trade Grant and 14 for Collins and 8
    Pistons Trade Cunningham for Johnson, Graham 4, ATL25, CHI25 and ATL27


    Spurs trade 48, CHA25 and a fake second for Harrison Barnes 21
    Pelicans trade 21 for 43, 48. and CHA25
    Kings trade Barnes and 43 for a fake second

    Draft:


    At 14, the Spurs select Jared McCain
    At 21, the Spurs select Yves Missi
    At 35, the Spurs select Nikola Djurusic (whom they convince to stay in Europe for another year)


    Free agency:


    The Spurs sign Cedi Osman to a $16M/2 deal with the final year being non-guaranteed


    Roster:


    PG Cunningham, Jones, Wesley
    SG Vassell, McCain, Branham
    SF Grant, Osman, Champangie
    PF Sochan, Barnes, Cissoko
    C Wembanyama, Missi, Bassey


    This is definitely more expensive than I would want the team to be. However, the Spurs do end up with a decent rotation including some young guys with potential in the second unit. I don't love how many assets were spent on a first unit that doesn't look to have enough to win despite being quite expensive. However, it's possible better players/ contracts might be out of the Spurs' price range. The major trade doesn't use cap space from any team, so it can be done immediately, which is always good for getting the rookies in the building leading up to the summer league. Missi and McCain are players with limited niches but decent upside within those niches. Djurisic got some hype playing next to Topic, and he could factor into the 2025 rotation if McCain takes over PG duties from Jones. It sucks to come into the draft with two top-10 picks and tons of future selections and leave with two mid-firsts and no extra future firsts, But I guess that's the price of progress.
    Last edited by Chinook; 2 Weeks Ago at 06:39 AM.

  13. #613
    The Dude minds DPG21920's Avatar
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    ya I do that one. EASILY. I would love Cade.

  14. #614
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    So a couple of final mock off-seasons before the draft renders most of the speculation moot. There's one more I'll try to squeeze out tomorrow, but I wanted to get this one in today.


    Trades:


    Spurs trade Keldon Johnson, Zach Collins, Devonte Graham, 4, 8, ATL25, CHI25 and ATL27 for Cade Cunningham, 14 and Jerami Grant
    Blazers trade Grant and 14 for Collins and 8
    Pistons Trade Cunningham for Johnson, Graham 4, ATL25, CHI25 and ATL27


    Spurs trade 35, CHA25 and a fake second for Harrison Barnes 21
    Pelicans trade 21 for 43, 48. and CHA25
    Kings trade Barnes and 43 for a fake second

    Draft:


    At 14, the Spurs select Jared McCain
    At 21, the Spurs select Yves Missi
    At 35, the Spurs select Nikola Djurusic (whom they convince to stay in Europe for another year)


    Free agency:


    The Spurs sign Cedi Osman to a $16M/2 deal with the final year being non-guaranteed


    Roster:


    PG Cunningham, Jones, Wesley
    SG Vassell, McCain, Branham
    SF Grant, Osman, Champangie
    PF Sochan, Barnes, Cissoko
    C Wembanyama, Missi, Bassey


    This is definitely more expensive than I would want the team to be. However, the Spurs do end up with a decent rotation including some young guys with potential in the second unit. I don't love how many assets were spent on a first unit that doesn't look to have enough to win despite being quite expensive. However, it's possible better players/ contracts might be out of the Spurs' price range. The major trade doesn't use cap space from any team, so it can be done immediately, which is always good for getting the rookies in the building leading up to the summer league. Missi and McCain are players with limited niches but decent upside within those niches. Djurisic got some hype playing next to Topic, and he could factor into the 2025 rotation if McCain takes over PG duties from Jones. It sucks to come into the draft with two top-10 picks and tons of future selections and leave with two mid-firsts and no extra future firsts, But I guess that's the price of progress.
    This doesn't impact the roster in the following year, but you have the Spurs trading away 35 but then using it on Djurusic..

    Not in love with Grant's contract, but I like him as a player. If Cade's 3p shooting continues to develop as it has, I think you've done a really good job of covering up Sochan's deficiency in this area. This is a fun build.

  15. #615
    Machacarredes Chinook's Avatar
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    This doesn't impact the roster in the following year, but you have the Spurs trading away 35 but then using it on Djurusic..

    Not in love with Grant's contract, but I like him as a player. If Cade's 3p shooting continues to develop as it has, I think you've done a really good job of covering up Sochan's deficiency in this area. This is a fun build.
    Instead of 35, I had NOP getting 43 from the Kings and 48 as part of a three-team trade where the Spurs get Barnes from SAC.

  16. #616
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    All right, so last hurrah


    Trades:


    Spurs trade Keldon Johnson, Zach Collins, Tre Jones and CHI25 to LAC for Paul George (extend-and-trade for a total of $153.7M/3)
    Spurs trade 35, 48 and two additional second-rounders from future years to NOP for 21


    (... feels like something is missing)


    Draft:


    At 4, the Spurs select Stephon Castle
    At 8, the Spurs select Cody Williams
    At 21, the Spurs select Zach Edey


    Free agency:


    The Spurs waive Graham (hmm...)
    The Spurs sign Chris Paul to a $40M/2 deal (via cap space)
    The Spurs re-sign Sandro MamuKelashvili to a $8M/2 deal (via the room exception and containing team option in second year)
    The Spurs re-sign sign Graham to an $8M/2 deal (via the remainder of the room exception with player option in second year)


    Roster:


    PG Paul, Castle, Wesley
    SG Vassell, Graham, Branham
    SF George, Williams, Champangie
    PF Sochan, Mamukelashvili, Cissoko
    C Wembanyama, Edey, Bassey


    Comments:


    Mock after mock, I tossed in a Graham trade to get rid of his guaranteed salary. It's just good business to do so. However, multiple times recently I've been looking at guard candidates to use all or part of the room exception on. In reality, Graham's one of the best such players. As a combo-guard with a good outside shot and a strong pick-and-roll game, he seems to pair well with Castle as a steady hand who can do PG things while also playing well off the ball. With Paul's age, having two capable backups coming off the bench together makes sense. If Castle is going to make it as a point-guard, having Paul there early in his career is about the best the team can do in terms of guidance.


    After the Bridges trade, it's not clear what a George deal would look like. The Spurs are giving up two legit rotation players and Collins who seems to fit well in a Kawhi/Harden offense. With George's ability to opt out, I don't know how much more the Clippers could ask, but the answer is probably that some team would be willing to give more. George has indicated that he'd like to play in a good system and a flowing offense more than a contender, and the Spurs' philosophy combined with Paul, Castle and Graham seems to be a good fit. In a lot of ways, George is the place Williams would be trying to reach, so being able to back him up. Add the growth Vassell can see from playing next to the paragon of his archetype, and the team might have a fascinating wing combo for the next four seasons.


    it, the Spurs are drafting Edey in this last mock. Go gigantic or go home. Maybe 21 is too low, but there's a legit chance that it's not. A lot of people might complain about Edey's defense, especially combined with Mamu's horrible showing there. But Castle and Williams should help, and so long as every plays drop coverage correctly, the overall effect should be better than the lowlights, as is the case with Lopez and Pau Gasol. The offense is fascinating, and Edey gives the bench a focal point, both in terms of post-ups but also in terms of PnR, at which Zach is actually very good. He's a good training big for Castle and should work very well off Graham. If that three-pointer comes along, the bench should be very interesting.


    Final Thoughts:


    When you compare this last mock to the first one I made in this thread, you can see a lot of similarities. The players are very different, but the guiding philosophy is the same. I believe the Spurs can and must take a real step forward while also taking full advantage of the young talent they have and stand to bring in in the near future. Just as Middleton was slated to age out for Holland and help Dillingham grow, so too would George and Paul age out for Castle and Williams. This is an "ideal" mock, so in practice, this roster would likely require some unprotected picks being added and very persuasive recruiting to make happen. While I do think the team would have a better chance at really making noise in the next two years, I'm not sure the long-term prognosis beats out that of the first mock roster. However, besides Edey being there, this seems doable. That's not to say it's at all likely that PATFO would even imagine doing this, but it seems more of a matter of will than capacity. It just goes to show how many options are always there and why speculating before and ing in hindsight remain so popular.


    Thanks to scott for the thread. It provided me a lot of entertainment over the past 10 weeks or so when I would've otherwise been tapping my foot counting down until today. I apologize for hijacking it so much.

  17. #617
    Every game is game 1 Seventyniner's Avatar
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    I don't consider that hijacking at all. It is totally in the spirit of the thread, even if you're throwing out more than one scenario. It's the thoughts that count.

  18. #618
    Savvy Veteran spurraider21's Avatar
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    my ideal offseason would have been salaun withdrawing from the draft tbh

  19. #619
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    Indeed - you weren't hijacking at all Chinook. Appreciate all the food for thought! That's what this thread was for.

  20. #620
    Machacarredes Chinook's Avatar
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    my ideal offseason would have been salaun withdrawing from the draft tbh
    So the Spurs/Hawks could win the 2025 lottery and select him first-overall?

  21. #621
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    Some things are clearer after the draft.
    Time to make my best impression of a Chinook-style post.

    My take is Spurs are 100% in on point Castle and we're not in for a smaller point guard.
    Ideal development would be Bucks 2.0 with obvious similarities between Castle-Jrue, Devin-Middleton and Wemby-Giannis.
    It's all about positional size and positive defense, but our spacing is dreadful as of now.
    I'm not giving up on Jeremy, not even close, but him and Castle can't both be starters this season.

    West will be brutal, chances of making the playoffs are low unless Wemby has an MVP-level season, which wouldn't surprise me.
    But we can't tank with Wemby, he's just too good. There are way too many teams that bottomed out and will surely be worse than us just because of Wemby.
    Wizards, Pistons, Nets, Hornets, Raptors, Blazers all look like they're ready to #capturetheFlagg, with Bulls and Jazz having also being in the running. And maybe some other teams.
    No chance to get a top5 worst record. What's the point of tanking, then?

    My pipe dream is Markkanen, but unless he refuses to extend, it's not happening. Jazz has 15 FRPs in the next 6 drafts and they don't need any more. They'll want a young player with all-star upside from a contender.

    With Castle, Spurs have solved POA defense issues and due to his size we're ready to build a defensive juggernaut.
    But even defensive juggernauts need spacing.
    I don't think there's a chance or a good fit available this summer if we talk star players, but we definitely need a couple of legit 3-D starters to make the team functional and enable everyone to develop in the right enviroment.

    As things stand right now, we'll have $20-25M available cap space depending on how the second round goes.

    Castle/Tre
    Devin/Malaki

    That's the guard rotation, imo. Castle will probably share the floor with Tre and can slide to SG or even SF, but I don't think they're going to bring a #4 pick off the bench.
    No trades needed.
    Wesley will be fighting for his NBA life and will surely get some minutes when Castle or Tre don't suit up.

    ?/Keldon/Champagnie
    ?/Jeremy/?

    This is just a dire wing rotation and we desperately need at least two players.


    Trade 1:

    Kings are looking to get rid of Harrison Barnes to go under the tax, he wouldn't cost much and Spurs can absorb his contract.
    $18M and $19M in the two upcoming seasons, fair value. Age 32 and 33 seasons, not too old. NBA champion, high charcater guy.
    Kings would probably accept some SRPs and Spurs absorbing his contract.

    Backup veteran option is Tobias Harris. I think Barnes is a better player, but Harris would be servicable enough. Same age.
    I wouldn't offer more than 40/2.

    If we're going with a younger option, Pat Williams apparently rejected 64/4 from the Bulls, idk if he's worth more.
    Expectations were high and he kind of never delivered.
    There were also rumors of PATFO being interested in Naji Marshall, decent rotation option, I guess.
    Obi Toppin is also a free agent.

    But let's stick with a short-term, veteran option.
    That's one wing done.


    Trade2:

    Cam Johnson appears to be the ideal solution for the second wing.
    Nets are bottoming out and I'm sure every playoff team with a FRP to spare will be after him.
    DFS would be a consolation price.

    As for Cam, he's young enough at 28, on a great deal up until 2027 and has a finals run under his belt.
    I think something like '25 CHI, '25 CHA, lottery proected '27 SAS with them taking both Zach and Graham would be a fair deal.
    I doubt anyone is offering two actual FRPs for Cam Johnson, even though Bridges trade ruined the market, contenders don't have picks to waste.
    If they ask for more, my limit would be worse of '27 SAS/ATL instead of just our own lottery protected pick.

    Getting rid of Collins and Graham without waiving him and getting Barnes and Cam Johnson in return would put us $3M below the cap.
    $3M below the cap assuming tonight's #35 is traded for Barnes.

    Free agency:

    Get another backup big with those $3M.
    Could even not guarantee Bassey and get up to $5.5M in cap space.
    Goga Bitadze looks like an obvious choice. Him being willing to punch coaches is a bonus, tbh.
    There's a decent number of veteran options. Drummond, Deandre, Zeller, Plumlee and so on. Could even bring back Barlow, but I don't think he's got enough size.

    24-25 roster:

    Castle/Tre/Wesley
    Devin/Malaki
    Cam/Keldon/Champagnie
    Barnes/Jeremy/Sidy
    Wemby/Bitadze/Bassey

    The biggest question mark with this lineup would be if we have enough playmaking, but since PATFO is fully on big point guard train and just used a #4 pick on Castle, they simply have to roll with it.
    Tre would be ready to step in if needed.
    Four wings are good shooters (giving Keldon benefit of the doubt), with Jeremy hoping to develop his shot and only Keldon is a negative defender.

    While this roster doesn't make the playoffs, it would be perfect for the current stage in roster development, imo.
    With solid spacing and positive defenders we could easily beat any playoff team on a given night and the bench would be deep.
    The most important thing is to have functional spacing and perimeter defense so Wemby and Castle can develop.

    If Malaki continues to be awful, just use Champagnie as Devin's backup. I've got no real hope Malaki will actually develop.

    Most importantly, this would be a big upgrade over last season's roster without using many assets and it would leave us with a lot of easily moveable contracts and a stash of picks, ready to strike when the opportunity to trade for an actual wing star presents itself. Tre, Keldon, Barnes, Jeremy would all be expendable.
    (Yeah right, Brian Wrong is just going to trade Keldon for a 2032 swap. )

  22. #622
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    Thanks for another thoughtful scenario, LeBowen. I was going to do a scenario where our entire rotation was Wemby, Devin, Castle and a bunch of picks in the next decade... but I won't disrespect the seriousness you put into this.

    Man, what an improvement that SL would be. The continued hole at wing is what makes moving out of #8 that much more baffling that we wouldn't even take a shot at one... but no need to relitigate all of that.

    I like the Cam Johnson option a lot, but I fear that his price will end up too much for the Spurs and their precious future draft capital. I could easily see a team who wants to win-now coming with multiple protected picks or far out picks for Johnson.

    Barnes is just an all-around solid vet who would give us leadership presence we so desperately need and his contract is kind of ideal for what we need to slot into our roster in terms of sizing and timing.

    Man, I'm salivating over the prospects of a starting 5 who, aside from Castle who will need to develop, have legit shooting ability from 3. It would be a major sea change in the way our offense flows. I like this build.

  23. #623
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    ^ folks are gonne be shocked at the asking price for 29 year old Cam Johnson. Teams are already lining up for him. I like him, I just dont things the stars will align

    Other offseason moves:
    - Swap Collins/Blake and Lopez/SRP
    - Sign Thobias Harris
    - Sign Gary Trent Jr


    24-25 roster:

    Castle/Tre
    Devin/Trent
    Tobias/Champaign
    Sochan/Keldon
    Wemby/Lopez

    Deep Bench
    - Malaki
    - Sidy
    - Bassey

  24. #624
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    ^ folks are gonne be shocked at the asking price for 29 year old Cam Johnson. Teams are already lining up for him. I like him, I just don’t things the stars will align

    Other offseason moves:
    - Swap Collins/Blake and Lopez/SRP
    - Sign Thobias Harris
    - Sign Gary Trent Jr


    24-25 roster:

    Castle/Tre
    Devin/Trent
    Tobias/Champaign
    Sochan/Keldon
    Wemby/Lopez

    Deep Bench
    - Malaki
    - Sidy
    - Bassey
    How much can a 12 ppg 3 and (average) D player really cost? 1 protected first was always the norm. Let's say there's a lot of demand, it can't be more than 2 protected firsts, and that would be an overpay, tbh.

  25. #625
    El rojo y los Spurs!!! Ariel's Avatar
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    The way things are shaping up, I think Spurs will go for another (soft) tank this season, gunning for another high lottery pick in a much anticipated draft and then go big game hunting in the '25 free agency and via trades. If that's the case, they better get it right, because they will have wasted Wemby's first two seasons, and they have only one more year until he becomes extension eligible, and I very much doubt he'll sign long term after two horrendous seasons if the third one isn't a home run. So the FO would be under tremendous pressure to get it right, they could thread the needle and lay the foundation for another dynasty, or completely fumble one of the best prospects in NBA history to the point he forces a deal elsewhere after his rookie deal and leaves nothing but barren land.

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