2. Figuring out who belong on the roster
One of the unfortunate side effects of getting eliminated from the playoffs with a fifth of the regular-season schedule left is seeing fans lose some of their enthusiasm as games no longer hold significance. Though it may feel like the Spurs are only playing for self-pride, the team must still determine who deserves to stick around for the next steps of the rebuild.
San Antonio can confidently say core players like Keldon Johnson, Jeremy Sochan, and Devin Vassell belong on the roster. But they can use the final seven games to evaluate their abundance of fringe rotation players. Spurs fans have already seen head coach Gregg Popovich test out lineups in the last couple of weeks, and there is no better time for experimentation.
Sandro Mamukelashvili, Julian Champagnie, Dominick Barlow, and Romeo Langford are auditioning for a future in the 2-1-0. You can probably group Keita Bates-Diop into that bunch too. All of them have received extended minutes or flashed fascinating skills on both ends of the court, and a last-ditch effort could earn someone another contract from the Spurs.
The harsh reality is that most of those guys will land elsewhere when free agency starts. But the Spurs should give them a shot to prove themselves rather than trot out veterans and learn nothing about the youngsters. Can these unrefined prospects and journeymen become critical pieces for this franchise? That is an answer PATFO should begin uncovering.