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3 San Antonio Spurs likely on hot seat after NBA Draft

Lonnie Walker IV
Lonnie Walker IV / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages
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Lonnie Walker IV / Chris Gardner/GettyImages

3. Lonnie Walker

Lonnie Walker appeared poised to break out in his fourth season, but save for a few weeks post-All-Star break, he was mostly disappointing in his contract year. That puts his return in doubt heading into the offseason, but the Spurs drafting a pair of 19-year-old wings in the first round likely sealed his fate for good.

While the Spurs probably aren’t going to bring him back, they still have a decision to make with Walker. They may extend him a qualifying offer in hopes of working out a sign and trade with an interested team or let him enter unrestricted free agency. The latter feels like a more Spursy move, but they could nab a second-rounder or two if they go with the former.

Moving on from Walker would be tough given his scoring ability and potential, though it’s probably time to do so with Joshua Primo on deck. Primo has been hard at work this offseason and should be ready for more minutes at shooting guard next season while Branham and Wesley develop behind him. Thus, letting Walker walk could help the Spurs in the long run.

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All in all, the Spurs drafting Sochan, Branham, and Wesley should make for a younger and more entertaining team next season. However, it could come at the cost of three current players with Bates-Diop, Langford, and Walker likely on the hot seat.