San Antonio Spurs Draft

San Antonio Spurs: 2021 NBA Draft Big Board 1.0

Jonathan Kuminga
Jonathan Kuminga / Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
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San Antonio Spurs NBA Draft Big Board: Players 16 - 13

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Josh Giddey / Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images

16. Josh Giddey - Combo Guard, Adelaide 36ers

Admittedly, I have not gotten the chance to watch Josh Giddey as much as I wanted to, but from what I have seen from him, he definitely has the potential to be one of the best passers in his draft class, and he's shown a very crafty finishing ability. He's considered to be a bit of a combo guard with the length of a wing, which has me optimistic that he could also be at least an average defender, but he would need to keep putting in work to become faster and more athletic to defend smaller guards.

With all of that in mind, the Spurs have no shortage of guards that struggle with shooting, and he would not help with the Spurs' shooting woes at all, or at least not any time soon. While he's supposedly seen some improvement in that department toward the end of his season, it's not enough for me to want him over some other prospects featured on this big board.

15. Ibou Dianko Badji - Center, F.C. Barcelona

Ibou Badji has seemingly disappeared from most NBA draft conversations. While I can partially understand this as he has had almost no meaningful playing time with Barcelona's first team in the ACB or Euroleague, at the same time, players that have similar measurements to Rudy Gobert who also have the mobility that Badji does certainly do not come around often.

Because he's had so little professional experience, picking him even in the second round would be a risk. Although the big man from Senegal would likely see a lot of playing time in Austin before sniffing regular minutes with the Spurs, he has such immense potential on defense that I would not mind seeing the Spurs use their second-round pick on him.

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Neemias Queta - Utah State v Texas Tech / Stacy Revere/Getty Images

14. Neemias Queta - Center, Utah State

Neemias Queta was one of the most impactful defenders in the NCAA playing for the Utah State Aggies, coming in first place in the entire NCAA this past season in blocks, defensive box plus-minus, and defensive win shares. He's a high-floor defender based on his IQ and instincts on that end of the floor with some potential to develop a jump shot based on his improvements in free-throw shooting every year with the Aggies.

What separates him from most other bigs, though, is his playmaking upside, as he recorded an impressive 2.7 assists per game this past season. Whether or not his offense will translate to the NBA is the big question for him at the moment. How he develops on that end of the floor will ultimately determine his NBA role, but at the very least, I can see him as a gritty defensive backup center coming off the bench.

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Vrenz Bleijenbergh / JASPER JACOBS/Getty Images

13. Vrenz Bleijenbergh - Point Forward, Antwerp Giants

I'm a bit surprised that I'm not seeing Vrenz Bleijenbergh's name a little higher on draft boards, as I think he would be a quality late first-round pickup. He projects as both a good shooter and playmaker as a 6-10 point-forward and recently won the rising star award in the EuroMillions League playing for the Antwerp Giants.

I'm higher on Bleijenbergh compared to other longer-than-average guards like Josh Giddey because he has more scoring upside, which should help his playmaking to translate to the NBA.

My biggest concern for him at the moment is his defense, given that he's still quite underweight for his position. While he could realistically defend the 1-3 adequately coming into the league, he will definitely have issues with defending power forwards unless he's able to fill out his frame.

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