The San Antonio Spurs fully embraced their rebuild in three parts, trading away DeMar DeRozan in the summer of 2021, Derrick White at the following Trade Deadline, and finally Dejounte Murray last offseason. That set the stage for a race to the bottom to give them a chance at a top prospect.
As with most things the Spurs organization attempts they were successful, finishing with just 22 wins and winning the Draft Lottery. From that second, the Spurs and the entire basketball world knew they would draft French phenom Victor Wembanyama with the No. 1 pick in the 2023 NBA Draft. The intervening six weeks were just a formality.
This offseason wasn't just about drafting Wemby, however. It also mattered how the Spurs were going to act around him. Did they use their cap space and draft assets to try and build an instant winner around Wembanyama? Or would they be patient, using their cap space as a mechanism to add draft capital and give Victor time to develop?
The Spurs clearly took door No. 2, exercising patience. That doesn't mean they were inactive; for from it. They made multiple draft picks, executed a multitude of trades, and re-signed a handful of players.
Let's therefore hand the Spurs a report card, with a letter grade for each of their moves this summer. How did they do? If an "A" is an excellent move, a "B" is worth making, a "C" is questionable and anything worse looks like a mistake, how did the Spurs do?
Let's just say they're likely making honor roll.
Let's go through each move in more detail, starting with the most important move any team made all offseason.
1. Drafted Victor Wembanyama
Drafted French center Victor Wembanyama with the No. 1 pick in the 2023 Draft
In terms of importance to a franchise, no team made a more impactful move this offseason than the Spurs did in drafting Victor Wembanyama with the first overall pick. He looks like a generational prospect who could be the league's best defender in short order, with a versatile offensive game to propel him into superstardom.
That doesn't mean Wembanyama is a sure thing; no player ever is (LeBron James, as some sort of cyborg, clearly doesn't count). His jumper could never develop into a weapon, and he could be simply a dependent offensive talent. Still, when your floor as a prospect is Anthony Davis and your upside is Monstar, you're a slam dunk of a draft pick.
Wembanyama may be 7'4" tall (or even slightly taller depending on who you talk to) but he is also very thin, so he will likely start his career at power forward next to a center; on the Spurs, that's likely to be Zach Collins and Dom Barlow. Eventually, the Spurs likely envision Wembanyama and Jeremy Sochan at the 4 and 5.
In terms of talent added, this is an A+ move. It's also hard to give the Spurs too much credit for simply drafting the obvious player, but at least they didn't talk themselves into drafting Brandon Miller over a clearly superior option.