Kevin O’Connor reveals surprising prospect San Antonio Spurs should draft

NBA Draft Board (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
NBA Draft Board (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Having lost nine of their last 11 games, the San Antonio Spurs are suddenly in the mix for a lottery pick in the stacked NBA Draft on July 29th. With the league’s second-toughest schedule remaining and multiple injuries still nagging the team, it’s looking clear to most the direction San Antonio should take to close out the season.

While by no means should they go out on the court and fold, the consensus among most is that a wider rotation featuring more of the blossoming young guys can only help the Spurs’ future. While it might not translate to many wins, neither is the current system of heavily relying on veteran players.

Doing so would help these guys get valuable reps, which is already very important. Even more, it could also lead to greater odds of getting a franchise-altering type of player in one of the most top-heavy draft classes the NBA has had in years.

This was one topic in a one-on-one sitdown former Air Alamo contributor Noah Magaro-George conducted with The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor. The entire interview is a must-watch for all Spurs fans, as they touched on everything from O’Connor’s love of Keldon Johnson to rotation issues.

O’Connor reveals the best fit for the San Antonio Spurs

In one segment focusing on the team’s future, Noah asked O’Connor who would be a good fit in San Antonio.

“The number one guy that comes to mind is Scottie Barnes,” said O’Connor. “He plays the way you want a Spurs players to play. A lot of effort. A lot of heart. Love for the game. He’s a hustle player.”

Scottie Barnes spent one year with Florida State this season, which is also where the Spurs scooped up Devin Vassell. The 6-9, 227-pound freshman guard averaged 10.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 4.1 assists in 24 minutes per game.

One stat that jumps out negatively, however, is his shooting. Barnes shot just 27.5 percent from three as a Seminole. Still, O’Connor didn’t see that as a dealbreaker:

“There’s perhaps nobody better than Chip Engelland at helping guys with some issues in their shots. Popovich and the Spurs…typically emphasize strengths and minimize weaknesses. Not every coach does that.”

Kevin goes on the explain that he sees Barnes as someone the Spurs can use as a playmaking post hybrid, similar to a Bam Adebayo type. The pick is definitely an interesting one, seeing as his name hasn’t been floated out as a potential fit in San Antonio.

O'Connor rightfully puts sliding Spurs on blast. Related Story

Still, O’Connor is one of a select few members of the national media that does his full due diligence when it comes to the Spurs. His knowledge of the team inside and out makes it clear he watches them in action regularly, so there’s definitely a lot of value to his thoughts on what the Spurs should do this summer.

Next. 7 Trades that came back to haunt the Spurs

As of now, Tankathon predicts San Antonio will be selecting 14th in the July draft, but that’s bound to change as they continue to power through the final third of a grueling schedule.