With the 2017 NBA Free Agency approaching, the San Antonio Spurs must address their issues at the point guard position. With Tony Parker sidelined to start the season, who will run the San Antonio offense?.
The San Antonio Spurs will be in need of a point guard in free agency, after Tony Parker’s quad injury. Despite the immense potential, sophomore DeJounte Murray lacks the experience to conduct the offense and veteran Patty Mills is an unrestricted free agent.
It’s already been discussed that Chris Paul will look at San Antonio in his search for a new team this offseason. This fit could certainly make sense, as Paul’s team-first mentality would create an easy transition into Popovich’s system.
As interesting as this may be, it’ll also require lots of financial adjustment for the Spurs as Paul would require a near max contract.
Executives and players around the NBA absolutely believe Chris Paul to the Spurs is a realistic possibility. Free agency starts in 19 days.
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) June 13, 2017
This leaves San Antonio with limited options heading towards next season. Considering their financial situation and their blatant need for guards, they’ll likely look toward the free agent pool to save their rotation.
Re-Signing Patty Mills
Mills will likely make strides on the free market. His championship experience, excellent range and playmaking ability will bring attention from any front office executive.
With that being said, it’s not impossible for San Antonio to re-sign Mills in the coming weeks. With Pau Gasol opting-out of his contract, there may be room to bring Mills back. This will depend on conflicting offers and General Manager R.C. Buford’s willingness to pay.
Bringing Mills back would certainly help Coach Gregg Popovich to maintain his current gameplan. Mills, along with Murray, inherited the majority of Parker’s minutes after he sustained a leg injury in May.
Mills would also help the Spurs to ensure their return to natural form, as he’s been a vital member of the team for six seasons. This would eliminate chemistry issues and the daunting period of adjustment that other free agents would take.
Lowry is an interesting prospect for San Antonio. His shooting ability, high motor and defensive prowess make him a great fit for the Spurs on paper. He’d also bring another All-Star talent to San Antonio which would help compete with emerging superteams.
On the other hand, Lowry is now 31 years old and would likely cost near-max money. Even scarier than the immense contract is his tendency to disappear in the playoffs like Harry Houdini.
Big question now is: Would CP3 or Lowry or anyone else leave some money on the table to join the Spurs. Does winning outweigh dollars?
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) June 20, 2017
Signing Lowry would send the message that San Antonio wants to compete and will do so by any means possible.
Potentially the most under-the-radar point guard in this year’s free agency is eight-year veteran Jrue Holiday. The massive presence of Anthony Davis and Demarcus Cousins in New Orleans overshadowed a rather productive year for Holiday.
In 32.7 minutes per game, Holiday averaged 15.4 points, 7.3 assists and 1.5 steals. He did so on 45 percent shooting from the field and nearly 36 percent shooting from three-point range.
Holiday’s high IQ would fill the gaps left by Parker while including an element of explosiveness stolen from Parker by age.
As big name free agents dominate this offseason, Holiday could be a fantastic fit for San Antonio. He’d also command a cheaper price-tag than competing free agents such as Chris Paul and Kyle Lowry.
Bringing George Hill back to San Antonio would make sense on a few different levels. First and foremost would be a Hill-Popovich reunion which would warm the hearts of fans everywhere.
Secondly, Hill fits the needs of San Antonio at point guard heading into the future. He’s a dynamic scorer, a solid shooter and a gritty defender. He also knows how to play in the Spurs offense and has no trouble playing alongside dynamic wing players.
— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) June 20, 2017
However, Hill was plagued with injury throughout the 2016-2017 season. He played just 49 games and struggled to play meaningful minutes throughout the playoffs.
San Antonio can’t afford to deal with more injury following their medical collapse in the 2017 Playoffs.
Unfortunately for the Spurs, there is no correct answer. No matter the outcome, the addition of any point guard would help San Antonio to improve.
Regardless of which guard is brought in, there’s no doubt that Coach Popovich will masterfully integrate any plethora of players to the Spurs’ system.
In the meanwhile, we must sit back and watch the tandem of Buford and Pop make their decisions. The ongoing firesales of contracts and players throughout the league will create a great opportunity for the duo to improve the squad.
The 2017 NBA Draft should also help indicate San Antonio’s free agency goals by filling roster spots with young talent.