If the San Antonio Spurs draft a guard, they’ll need to trade one away
By Andrew Ites
The San Antonio Spurs may draft a guard in the first round for the fourth straight year. If they do, they’ll likely need to get rid of someone from their deep backcourt rotation.
The San Antonio Spurs have the deepest backcourt rotation in the league, but that may not stop them from drafting another guard with one of their two first round picks.
The Spurs like to take the best player available, regardless of position, and that may be a guard at pick number 19 or 29.
Ty Jerome has been a popular pick in mock drafts, and he seems like a player that would fit perfectly in San Antonio’s system.
If he were still on the board when the Spurs are on the clock, it’d be hard to pass him up even though Jerome doesn’t fill a need at the big man or wing position.
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In this hypothetical situation where San Antonio drafts a guard in the first round, they’ll need to move on from one or more of their veteran guards to allow their young backcourt players to thrive.
I’ve discussed potential trades for DeMar DeRozan and Patty Mills already this offseason, and those would be the two most likely guards to get moved if this comes to pass.
DeRozan only has one year left on his contract before he has a player option for the 2020-21 season. If he declines that option, the Spurs could potentially lose him for nothing in the summer of 2020.
Patty Mills has been a fixture in San Antonio for nearly a decade, but he’s now in his 30’s and will be getting paid around $13 million per year over the next two years. With Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, and Lonnie Walker all fighting for backcourt minutes next season, Mills may find himself as the odd man out of the rotation if he remains a Spur.
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I don’t expect the Spurs to take a guard with one of their top two picks, but they’ve historically been one of the most difficult franchises to predict heading into draft night.
If San Antonio shocks the fanbase and takes another guard, they should be looking to move on from at least one of the veterans in their loaded backcourt.