San Antonio Spurs: DeMarre Carroll signing provides more lineup flexibility

By Andrew Ites
BROOKLYN, NY - JANUARY 29: DeMarre Carroll #9 of the Brooklyn Nets shoots a free-throw against the Chicago Bulls on January 29, 2019 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. 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 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
BROOKLYN, NY - JANUARY 29: DeMarre Carroll #9 of the Brooklyn Nets shoots a free-throw against the Chicago Bulls on January 29, 2019 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. 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 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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The San Antonio Spurs’ addition of a versatile wing like DeMarre Carroll allows them to play small or big whenever they need to.

The San Antonio Spurs had a glaring hole on the wing entering the offseason, and it could’ve been even worse if they weren’t able to re-sign Rudy Gay to a two-year deal.

Fortunately, they negotiated a solid contract to bring Gay back to San Antonio and acquired another veteran wing on a two-year deal in DeMarre Carroll.

Now the Spurs are flush with talent at the guard and wing positions while they still probably need another rotation player in the frontcourt (DeMarcus Cousins?).

For now, Gregg Popovich will be able to put out multiple different styles of lineups with this current iteration of the Spurs’ roster.

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Their best starting lineup would probably include Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, DeMar DeRozan, Rudy Gay, and LaMarcus Aldridge.

But Pop could choose to bring one of his two young point guards off of the bench and bring in Carroll to play the three or the four while DeRozan shifts down to his more natural position at the two. In that scenario, White or Murray would get the benefit of being able to run the offense in the second unit.

There are a few instances where the Spurs will need to play a bigger lineup when they face a team with twin towers like the Pacers or Sixers will have next season.

I would guess Popoivich will sub in Jakob Poeltl for one of the point guards in that scenario while DeMar moves to the two, Gay mans the three, Aldridge plays the four, and Poeltl slides in at the five.

Pop will also have the option of subbing in Carroll for Gay in any of those lineups. Rudy had some big nights coming off of the bench last season, and the Spurs may need his shot creation with the second unit while Carroll plays more off of the ball with the starters.

San Antonio will still have plenty of role players ready to step up if one of their top seven players suffers an injury with Patty Mills, Davis Bertans, Bryn Forbes, Marco Belinelli, and Lonnie Walker filling out the bench.

That sort of depth helps deal with potential injuries and also allows Pop to play multiple styles against a wide variety of teams this season.

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Spurs: Making the case for DeMarre Carroll as a perfect fit. Next

DeMarre Carroll’s positional versatility will be a huge addition to this incredibly deep Spurs squad.

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