Grading the most extreme Spurs trade out there

Gregg Popovich, San Antonio Spurs
Gregg Popovich, San Antonio Spurs / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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Ladies and gents, this is not hyperbole. It’s not often that you see a four-team trade proposed on Twitter, let alone Ian Levy’s insane (but technically legal) 30-team mock trade. We’ve looked at mock trades in the past with degrees of scrutiny, but this is by far the most head-shaking basketball concoction I have ever seen. When we enter the bowels of the NBA regular season, writers come up with this. 

In the 30-team trade, the San Antonio Spurs trade away Jakob Poeltl, Doug McDermott, Romeo Langford, and Josh Richardson for Miami’s 2023 first-round pick and Russell Westbrook. The Spurs have been linked to Westbrook all year just because they have the cap space to pay his massive contract, although he would probably be bought out. 

30 team mock trade is as insane as it sounds

The Spurs’ asking price for two first-round picks for Poeltl is a tad high. In my mind, Poeltl is worth an unprotected pick, McDermott and Richardson are worth a protected pick each (or an unprotected pick for the pair), and Romeo Langford should not be traded at all. His defensive IQ and possible offensive upside are worth exploring for the Spurs during their rebuild. 

In the trade, Richardson is sent to Memphis, Poeltl goes to the Clippers, Lanford to the Hornets, and McDermott to Washington. All for the Heat’s 2023 draft pick? 

I understand that the point of the mock trade is to demonstrate how crazy the trade deadline can be and how many moving parts there are. I also understand that the Spurs are trying to amass as many upcoming picks as possible, and clearing out four roster spots is a good idea if they want to focus on a youth movement. I also understand that since the Lakers are bringing in Bradley Beal, DeMar DeRozan, and Danny Green, they need to open up some roster space, hence Westbrook being sent out to one of the few teams that can take him on. 

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In an ideal world, if the Spurs have to trade away those players, I think that package is worth two unprotected firsts or an unprotected first and multiple picks with protections. I’m not taking the proposal seriously, but if I were, it would earn a C-. The only reason it passes is due to the absurdity of it all.

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