The San Antonio Spurs have spent years formulating a deep and potentially resourceful D-League roster.
Last season, the team — with a couple of prospects that may be worthy of an NBA roster spot — captured their first D-League championship over the top-seeded Los Angeles D-Fenders.
En route to the championship, Austin (33-17) won a pair of elimination games against the Erie Bayhawks and Canton Charge in the preceding playoff rounds. The Toros played the maximum amount of games (9) in their title run.
While winning a championship is indicative of the success of the program, the Spurs are still developing players with the intention of eventually helping out the professional roster. 2011 draft pick Cory Joseph played an important role, averaging 13.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists in 14 games, as did D-League MVP Justin Dentmon.
Dentmon begins the season 11th on Kevin Scheitrum’s D-League prospects rankings. Per Scheitrum:
The reigning league MVP shredded up the NBA D-League last year and led his team to the league title and finished Summer League strong for the Mavericks, but not until he spent two games getting shots blocked by taller, more agile competition. Dynamite playmaker, but needs to become 3-point threat to remain in NBA.
This year’s team adds a couple of intriguing rookies in JaMychal Green and Wesley Witherspoon. Witherspoon, who was apart of the Memphis freshman class that included Tyreke Evans, saw his stock fall dramatically from likely first-round pick to late second-round selection. Scheitrum is intrigued by the 22-year-old forward, slotting him at 18th.
Alabama’s Green was signed to the Spurs roster on Oct. 23 before being released three days later. The move was designed to ensure Green will forgo the D-League draft and play in Austin this season, where his athleticism has him placed 28th on the prospect rankings.