9 Players the San Antonio Spurs held onto for too long

San Antonio Spurs, LaMarcus Aldridge, Pau Gasol
San Antonio Spurs, LaMarcus Aldridge, Pau Gasol / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
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5. Terry Cummings

Cummings was already a two-time All-Star and one of the league’s elite scorers before arriving in San Antonio in 1989. He had scored over 20 points per game in six of his first seven NBA seasons, and the 6’9 forward could be a force on both ends of the court.

The Spurs missed the playoffs in 1989, but the additions of Cummings and David Robinson, who was a rookie after the number one overall pick in 1987 was forced to serve two years in the Navy before coming to San Antonio, allowed the team to win 56 regular season games and advance to the second round of the postseason.

The Trail Blazers knocked out the Spurs in seven games on their way to winning the Western Conference as Cummings averaged 22.4 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 1.4 steals in what would be his best season as a Spur. 

The 6’9 forward’s production slipped over the next two years, but he was still a key piece before a knee injury in 1992 altered his career. Cummings returned for the final nine games of the regular season and the playoffs, but he was not the same player.

The San Antonio Spurs kept him on their roster for two more years, despite his struggles, before he left in free agency in 1995. Terry Cummings played five seasons in the NBA after leaving the Alamo, but he was limited to 20 minutes per game and was no longer an elite scorer. The Spurs kept winning, including reaching the conference finals in 1995, but they held on to the 6’9 forward too long.