Veteran ball handler Jamal Crawford has entered free agency following a buyout with the Atlanta Hawks. Should the San Antonio Spurs pursue him as a rotation player?
The San Antonio Spurs’ offseason is progressing, with recent free-agent acquisitions in early July. Their next target should be a veteran of the league, however, that looks to be headed toward the open market.
In an unanticipated turn of events, the Los Angeles Clippers let go of Jamal Crawford in an attempt to create cap space. The 17-year guard spent his last five seasons with the Clippers, including two Sixth Man of the Year campaigns in 2014 and 2016.
Meanwhile, the San Antonio Spurs remained relatively quiet through the first week of Free Agency. Besides the acquisition of Rudy Gay and the re-signing of Patty Mills, the Spurs’ front office has made minimal noise throughout the league.
It’s no secret that the Western Conference has grown stronger over the past week. Three All-Stars (Paul George, Jimmy Butler and Paul Millsap) have come to the West and strengthened the Spurs’ competition. With that being said, San Antonio should gather as much talent as they could acquire in order to remain a contender.
Thank you @ATLHawks for allowing me to be a free agent. Much respect..
— Jamal Crawford (@JCrossover) July 7, 2017
Crawford may be the perfect asset for General Manager R.C. Buford to pursue.
Despite reaching the age of 37, Crawford remains one of the league’s greatest bench players in the NBA. His ball-handling is impeccable and unaltered by age while his range remains elite.
Considering the uncertainty behind legend Manu Ginobili’s return, Crawford may be the best option to fill his role. ‘J-Crossover’ has been one of the league’s best passing shooting guards over the past decade and could easily facilitate off the bench.
As Ginobili has been San Antonio’s perennial sixth man, Crawford has been the same for Los Angeles and New York. His high motor and absolute competitiveness are what make him perfect to fill Manu’s role. Should Ginobili return, Crawford could easily play off-ball at any wing position.
Another interesting connection between Crawford and San Antonio is through sophomore guard Dejounte Murray. Each of the Washington natives attended Rainier Beach High School and have bonded because of it.
— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) February 25, 2017
Murray and Crawford are notably close and have maintained a student-mentor relationship as Murray has ascended to the NBA. Having a mentor of such a high-caliber in the same locker room could greatly assists Murray’s development.
Lastly, Crawford brings an element of dynamic play that would surprise opposing powerhouses such as Cleveland and Golden State. Crawford could be a major key in earning another title, which is always San Antonio’s main goal.
Minnesota, Washington, Cleveland out front for Jamal Crawford's services, I'm told.
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) July 7, 2017
Competition for Crawford seems high, as many teams have shown high interest in signing the veteran. San Antonio is also hopeful that they’ll retain restricted free agent Jonathon Simmons.
It may be a stretch, but Jamal Crawford should certainly be looked at for a position on San Antonio’s roster.