Lonnie Walker is set to enter restricted free agency this summer following an up and down season for the San Antonio Spurs. Walker played poorly during the first half of the season but played better post-All-Star break, averaging a solid 15.3 points on above-average efficiency.
However, after showing little improvement over the last two seasons, the Spurs will have to decide whether he's worth bringing back. That's where the 2022 NBA Draft could come in. San Antonio will have three first-round picks and there are several alternatives to Walker that could be available. With that in mind, let's look at three potential Walker replacements in the 2022 NBA Draft.
Replacement #3: Dyson Daniels
A 6’6 guard, Dyson Daniels ranks as one of the more intriguing lottery prospects due to his versatility. The 19-year-old had a solid all-around season playing for the G League Ignite, averaging 11.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4.4 assists,1.9 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game.
Dyson reminds me of former Spur Derrick White in that he's a two guard that's skilled in several areas. That said, he's four years younger than White was when he was drafted and has a much higher upside for several reasons, including his age.
For one, he's a great passer who can find cutters from the perimeter or as the ball handler in the pick and roll. Dyson is also a clever slasher who always seems to get his defender off-balance and is an impressive finisher around the basket. He's even a terrific defender who can lock down his man on the perimeter, contest shots at the rim, and help crash the defensive glass.
All of that makes him a likely top 10 pick, but his lack of shooting is his biggest weakness, as he hits just 25.5% of his threes. Despite that, it probably wouldn't dissuade the Spurs, who could possibly fix his shot, making Dyson a candidate for the 9th pick to replace Walker.