San Antonio Spurs Free Agency

San Antonio Spurs in contract years: Dante Cunningham

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 7: Dante Cunningham #44 of the Brooklyn Nets shoots the ball during game against the Chicago Bulls on April 7, 2018 at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 7: Dante Cunningham #44 of the Brooklyn Nets shoots the ball during game against the Chicago Bulls on April 7, 2018 at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)
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The San Antonio Spurs signed Dante Cunningham to a one-year deal this offseason. Will he remain a Spur next season after his contract expires?

The San Antonio Spurs have had success bringing in middling veteran players to affordable deals and getting the most out of them by giving them the perfect role.

The Spurs’ front office is hoping they’ve done it again by signing Dante Cunningham to a one-year contract with $2.487 million in fully guaranteed money.

In 21.4 minutes per night, Cunningham scored 5.7 points per game with 4.1 rebounds and shot 34.5% from three on 2.3 attempts per game in a season split between New Orleans and Brooklyn.

Cunningham is a league average defender, and he has the ability to play small forward, power forward, and even center in super small lineups.

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Cunningham is a career journeyman who’s played for six different teams during his nine-year NBA career. His career high in points per game and minutes came in Minnesota in 2012-13 where he scored 8.7 points per game in 25.1 minutes.

It will be interesting to see where Cunningham fits into Gregg Popovich’s rotation next season.

Cunningham will be competing with Davis Bertans for minutes as a backup small forward/power forward behind Rudy Gay and LaMarcus Aldridge.

Bertans definitely has more upside than Cunningham, but Popovich hasn’t always trusted Bertans as he only played 14.1 minutes per game last season. I’d like to see Bertans play more minutes than Cunningham this year, but I could see Pop rolling with a trusted veteran more often than not when the game is on the line.

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It’s possible that Cunningham discovers an aspect of his game that no other coach has been able to unlock, but I’m not too excited about the 31-year-old’s prospects in San Antonio. I think he can be a solid role player this season, but I don’t expect the Spurs to re-sign him when he becomes a free agent next summer.

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