San Antonio Spurs: Predicting next season's starting lineup
San Antonio Spurs Center: Jakob Poeltl
Jakob Poeltl took over the starting spot this season after the departure of LaMarcus Aldridge and made an immediate impact. As a starter, Jakob averaged a solid 9.8 points, 8.5 rebounds, and two blocks per game in just 29.2 minutes.
Jakob will seek to build upon his strong play next season, particularly on the defensive end, emerging as an elite rim protector. With Poelt protecting the paint and Murray, White, and Johnson defending on the perimeter, San Antonio has a chance to be an above-average defense next season.
On offense, Poeltl has proven surprisingly effective despite limited range. Jakob has not only become an excellent finisher around the basket but has added a floater to his arsenal. As a result, Poeltl led all Spurs players by connecting on 61.6 percent of his shots.
Additionally, Jakob is an effective screen setter, helping free up teammates while also providing an interior scoring threat as the roll-man. His 3.2 offensive rebounds per game create additional possessions, helping cement himself as an effective starting center for the Spurs.
Whether these predictions are proven correct remains to be seen. That said, the 2021-22 starting lineup figures to be both different and perhaps better fitting than last season’s version.