San Antonio Spurs: Ranking 5 guys primed for a huge leap next season

San Antonio Spurs Lonnie Walker IV, Keldon Johnson, Devin Vassell, Tre Jones
San Antonio Spurs Lonnie Walker IV, Keldon Johnson, Devin Vassell, Tre Jones / Abbie Parr/Getty Images
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Tre Jones / Jason Miller/Getty Images

San Antonio Spurs: No. 5 - Tre Jones

Many were surprised when Tre Jones was still available as the 41st overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. Coach Krzyzewski, who recently announced this would be his last year coaching at Duke, was certainly one of them.

While Coach K obviously had a bias, it says a lot about the 21-year-old point guard that such a legendary basketball mind had such high praise for him. When the Spurs signed Jones to a 3-year, $4.2 million contract last November, it showed that they're believers in him as well.

Tre spent most of his rookie season in the G League but did show up in 37 games for the Spurs. In that span, he made 3 of 5 shots from long range, 17 of 19 free throws, and tallied 39 assists to 13 turnovers.

The biggest strength of the young point guard is undoubtedly his defensive abilities, something that earned him two ACC All-Defense selections and a Defensive Player of the Year award. With so many talented young point guards in the NBA, the Spurs will clearly need his skills on that end of the floor going forward.

Whether the Spurs bring back Patty Mills or not, they must find more time for Jones next season to show what he can do. While his jump shot and overall scoring will need some work, it's tough to improve when playing seven minutes per night.

While Tre is a smart, careful point guard who can help the team right away, I'm still not sure how much time Coach Popovich is ready to give him, so he falls fifth on the list for now.