The San Antonio Spurs are in rebuilding mode, but they aren’t exactly starting from scratch. In fact, they've been preparing for the imminent roster overhaul for years by drafting wisely and are now beginning to reap the rewards.
While the team’s roster has been criticized for being solid if unspectacular, several players are quickly proving doubters wrong this season. Moreover, their success has provided San Antonio with a number of fantastic assets. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best ones San Antonio has with trade season on the horizon.
Asset #5: The Chicago Bulls future 1st round pick
At first glance, the Chicago Bulls' pick doesn't seem like an exceptional asset beyond the fact that it's a first-rounder. However, it's an underrated asset that could prove very useful to the Spurs in the near future. The pick itself is somewhat unusual considering teams rarely trade first-rounders four years out without the pick being heavily protected.
While the pick is protected, it's not heavily so, with the pick being just top-10 protected in 2025 and top-8 protected in 2026 and 2027. Additionally, key Bulls players like DeMar DeRozan and Nikola Vuvic are unlikely to be on the team by then, increasing the chances that they'll be a lottery team.
While it's obviously hard to project Chicago's record beginning in 2025, the odds of that pick eventually conveying to the Spurs seem high. Teams have been known to tank to avoid giving up protected firsts, though Chicago would have to finish in the bottom third of the league in three consecutive seasons.
It's possible, though it could jeopardize the job of the GM and coach, likely ensuring that they'll be competitive enough for it to convey at some point. Meanwhile, San Antonio could be a playoff team by then, and in addition to their own pick, could also end up with a lottery pick from Chicago. As a result, the Bulls' future first is a potentially great asset.