Latest rumors hint at fate of Tre Jones with the Spurs during free agency

Tre Jones, Chris Paul
Tre Jones, Chris Paul / Chris Coduto/GettyImages

It's been one of the hottest topics on Spurs Twitter, so I figured I'd chime in with my two cents: yes, there is somewhat of a dearth of talent at point guard in San Antonio, but that's okay for now. 

This conversation comes following a long stretch where the team was seemingly overflowing with talent at the lead guard position—I vividly remember conversations circulating about how the '21 Spurs might manage to find minutes for Josh Primo in a rotation full of Dejounte Murray, Derrick White, Tre Jones, and others. 

The same discussion was held the following season after the 2022 NBA Draft, where the Spurs took Malaki Branham and Blake Wesley in the first round.

I hope this serves as an important reminder that in basketball (and in life in general), these things tend to sort themselves out. Derrick is competing for championships in Boston, Dejounte is in Atlanta for now, and Primo remains unsigned following his abrupt release last season.

Those moves have left the Spurs where they are now—with Tre Jones as the incumbent starter and the backup minutes filled by some combination of Devonte' Graham, Wesley, and Branham. Maybe a little weak, but yet again, that is okay.

I know some of you saw Jones' name listed as starting PG and shuddered. He's been the biggest hold up for some fans of the Silver and Black when discussing next season's lineups. 

Regardless of how you may feel about Jones, however, know the organization loves him. The topic of his free agency came up in a recent SpursTalk article from team insider LJ Ellis, revealing San Antonio might have plans to bring him back this summer.

"I’ve been told that [Coach Popovich] has stated a strong preference that the team re-signs Tre Jones."

LJ Ellis of Spurs Talk

Here's the deal: Jones is a very capable defensive guard (ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2020) who loves to spread the rock to his teammates and has found success scoring on drives. 

What is more Spurs-ian than that description? Tre is a decent three-point shot away from being a competent starter or one of the best sixth men in the NBA. Not to get too opinionated, but is there any downside to re-signing him? 

You don't have to look very far to see a potential career outcome for Tre in his older brother. There are few assets more valuable to the Memphis Grizzlies right now than backup floor general Tyus Jones (especially considering the upcoming Ja Morant suspension). Sure, it be a surface level comparison, but that doesn't make it a false one!

And those are just the on-court reasons! I've long been in the camp that extending Tre Jones is the right move for the Spurs, both for now and for the future. 

Right now, all focus surrounds the arrival of Victor Wembanyama. Although the team may not win immediately, Wemby will need teammates with a strong leadership presence and the willingness to share the ball. Look no further than Tre Jones.

In the future, maybe the team finds its long-term answer at PG. Maybe the Jones naysayers are right, and Devin Vassell or Jeremy Sochan becomes a lead creator for the Spurs. Maybe that guy is waiting for the Spurs to sign him in free agency or the draft. You know what the team will still need? A backup! 

Tre’s floor is a rotational guard. There is no reason not to lock up this guy who Coach Pop clearly loves and “views as a fearless competitor who can positively impact winning.”

The Spurs can match any contract Tre Jones is presented with in free agency this summer after they present him with a roughly $6 million qualifying offer. So long as the contract is reasonable (I'd project somewhere in the range of 3 years, $30 million), it sounds as though the Spurs are willing to pay the price to retain their homegrown point guard.