This offseason for the San Antonio Spurs is shaping up to be the most unpredictable one in years. At least, that's the hope, anyway. By now, fans are ready to see some changes instead of the "we like the group we have" attitude that's now led to two consecutive playoff misses.
With an estimated cap space of around $49.1 to spend on re-tooling, no options should be off-limits for San Antonio. Even though they suffered from devastating injuries and COVID-related issues last season, it's clear there are still glaring holes on the roster even with a full squad.
Spurs Twitter has been abuzz with ways to improve the team that range from such extremes as trading for Ben Simmons to moving up to third in the NBA Draft. While some aren't very realistic, it's still fun to imagine what could be if the Spurs manage to get a superstar or superstar in the making.
A couple of weeks ago, I came across the best version of a what-if poll I've seen in quite a while. It was proposed by Stephen Hale, AKA Quan, who goes by @thehalestone on Twitter. The choices went as follows:
Usually, it's hard to get results of a four-option poll that well-balanced, especially on Spurs Twitter. Somehow, though, he managed to find four options that all had enough weight to them to garner at least 15 percent of the vote each.
The poll gave me an idea. I reached out to Quan to coordinate the best way to turn his options into real rosters to be simulated in a 2021-22 NBA Season on NBA 2K21. With the help of fellow Air Alamo writer Dylan Hunter Carter (@DylanHCarter) and Spurs fan Max Seger (@seger_max), I was able to make my idea a reality. They did a lot of work so deserve big-time props for helping make this happen.
NBA 2K21's MyNBA mode allows the user to fully control a franchise and even includes the ability to download players in the upcoming NBA Draft class. In the interest of being thorough, Dylan went all out with his simulations.
"It was multi-season," he told me. "I simulated through the current season, then went through the offseason and simulated the 2021-22 season with each of the rosters you gave me." Max Seger then used the same criteria to run two simulations as well.
After the jump, I'll start with the hypothetical roster that performed the worst in their simulation, moving up to the most successful one as I go along. *One note: Only option D includes DeMar DeRozan and Patty Mills returning. Let's begin!