3 Members of the Spurs young core primed to have breakout seasons

Devin Vassell, Keldon Johnson
Devin Vassell, Keldon Johnson / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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1.) Devin Vassell

Topping the list of potential breakout candidates for the Spurs is Devin Vasell. Vassell finished second on the team in scoring but looked like he was the best player on the Spurs when healthy. That might not be the case next season with Wembanyama, but his presence should only help Vassell. Last season, he showed a previously unseen ability to consistently create for himself in the NBA. He emerged as an efficient, high-volume 3-point shooter, which also helped him develop into a mid-range threat.

Both of those skills are easily replicable next season, even more so with Wembanyama and Zach Collins there to set screens. Both big men can space the floor and make it easier for Vassell to generate offense for himself using ball screens. Playing with two big men likely means that the Spurs will play slower, which could help Vassell on both ends of the floor.

Offensively, the Spurs may not have as many fast break opportunities, but they could focus more on executing in a half-court, which could mean more plays being run. Vassell is the best shooter in the starting lineup, so it would make sense that Coach Popovich would use him in pindowns and in dribble handoffs.

Defensively, Vassell wasn't as good last season, but he should be better next season, playing alongside more size and in less random lineups. After averaging 18.5 points per game last season, with another summer to sure up his game, he could potentially average around 21 points in 2023–24 and truly breakout.


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