Spurs Roster

San Antonio Spurs 2021-22 roster: Locks, fringe guys, and break-ins

Keldon Johnson, Dejounte Murray
Keldon Johnson, Dejounte Murray / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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San Antonio Spurs
Doug McDermott / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages

Fringe 1. Doug McDermott - Power Forward

The Spurs badly needed to improve their 3-point shooting over the summer, and the acquisition of Doug McDermott should be the biggest reason they will. As I previously wrote, he's the second-best pure shooter on the team and provides the spacing DeMar DeRozan didn't in the starting lineup.

Of the volume 3-point shooters in the preseason (more than four attempts per game), he was second in percentage at 42.9, going 9-of-21. On top of that, he's similar to Marco Belinelli with his ability to move without the ball, only he does so on hard cuts to the basket.

All that said, I could see a case where McDermott's lack of defensive presence leads Popovich to opt for more size or defensive prowess over shooting on occasion. While he didn't have a great preseason, Thaddeus Young is still a starter in this league, and his versatility could work well with that unit.

It's a stretch that he'll be benched, but I wouldn't say McDermott is a total lock in his first season with the Spurs.

San Antonio Spurs
Jakob Poeltl / Alex Menendez/GettyImages

Fringe 2. Jakob Poeltl - Center

I have no reservations about Jakob Poeltl being this team's starting center in the short term. But as offensive basketball continues to become more and more important each season, I'm not sure how long that's going to last.

Poeltl is one of the best defending bigs in the league and is deserving of a starting role for what he offers on that end. Still, two-way abilities are becoming more prevalent in the NBA, and having a center that sometimes misses the rim entirely on free throws can come back to bite the Spurs often.

The acquisitions of Zach Collins and Jock Landale helped round out the big man roster in San Antonio, the latter of which I think could end up playing his way into a larger role before the season ends. I'll get more into that later. While I'm ok with Poeltl as the starting center to begin the season, I feel like there might be times where that could come into question if Landale plays as well as I expect.