Can the San Antonio Spurs keep their impressive draft record going?
When it comes to identifying and developing talent there are few NBA teams that do it quite as well as the San Antonio Spurs. Never a marquee destination for free agents, San Antonio has had to lean on internal development for talent. It’s a process that’s worked out well for them so far.
Over the past five drafts, they’ve collected one of the most promising young cores in the NBA. Collectively Dejounte Murray, Keldon Johnson, Derrick White, Devin Vassell, and Lonnie Walker all fall somewhere between high-level starter and quality role player and they’ve all got a lot of room to improve. And most of them were taken near the end of the 1st round.
A silver lining of the Spurs’ losing streak has been the improvement it’s done for their draft projections. The Spurs could be going back to the lottery for the second year in a row.
The most glaring needs for the Spurs are on the wing and in their frontcourt. Thankfully there are plenty of prospects projected to be available in the middle of the first round who could fit well with what the Spurs are building.
Here’s what we think they should do with three potential additions.
Should the Spurs Draft or Pass on Gonzaga’s Corey Kispert?
Anyone who watched Gonzaga rampage through the college basketball landscape this season knows what Corey Kispert is going to bring to your team. But in case you’re unfamiliar it’s really very simple – Corey’s a shooter.
Kispert lit it up as a junior, shooting 44 percent from behind the arc on 5.4 attempts per game. In his senior season he ramped that up to a similarly blistering 44 percent from deep but now on 6.5 looks a game. And he was doing it against some of the best teams in the country too. And the senior showed up when the Zags needed him most, putting together an impressive run through the tournament.
While he is an elite shooter, that’s kind of the only thing the Spurs would be drafting Kispert for. He’s not much of a playmaker, and as a stretch four, there could be concerns about his defense when matching up with more physical forwards.
The Spurs do need more shooting. But if they’re going to go back to the lottery for the second year in a row I’d like them to take someone with a little more upside to their game, even if that does mean taking a bigger risk.
Next: Prospect No. 2