Draft analyst paints different picture of Spurs supposed timeline

Draft expert Jonathan Givony talks Spurs with Kevin O'Connor and claims San Antonio is entering win-now mode sooner than fans expected.
Victor Wembanyama
Victor Wembanyama / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages

The San Antonio Spurs 'timeline' is probably the most discussed part of their offseason. Everyone seems to believe they know exactly what the plan is but there is a problem with the prevailing train of thought. Many are operating under the assumption that there is no flexibility in the timeline. It's like the expectation is for the franchise to be stubborn in their approach to their rebuild when GM Brian Wright explicitly said that all options are on the table.

By the end of the season, people were arguing over whether Victor Wembanyama was a top-20 player in the NBA as a rookie. You wouldn't have argued that point in November. For many reasons, the French phenom saw his share of struggles on top of the team's trouble integrating such an important yet unique piece into their rotation. He fell too often, either from the physicality of the league or from losing his balance; his shooting was poor, and he turned the ball over too much.

As the season went on, he morphed into more than Spurs fans could have dreamed of. He rattled off three straight Rookie of the Month awards and ran away with the Rookie of the Year trophy. He was second in the Defensive Player of the Year voting. The massive growth he showed midseason is foreshadowing how fast he'll continue to blossom. That's something that the front office may recognize a little more than fans have given them credit for.

The Spurs desire to win shouldn't surprise anyone

Let's play out the slow-paced timeline that fans love to throw around. If the Spurs use both of their draft picks and bring in players younger than Wembanyama, it will take years before they are ready to compete. Some of the players mocked to San Antonio are Rob Dillingham and Reed Sheppard. While both are talented players, they are both 19 years old. Victor may only be 20 but he doesn't play like nor have the expectations of a normal 20-year-old.

Coach Popovich signed a five-year deal last summer. There are only four years left, and he is 75 years of age. Nobody knows when Coach Pop will decide to hang it up, but he would likely prefer to compete for a championship again before he rides off into the sunset.

Proper asset management will ensure the Spurs don't mortgage the future to begin competing soon. That is the job of the general manager, and when you have Victor Wembanyama already on your roster, along with a vault full of draft picks over the next seven years, you should have everything you need to get aggressive now.