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San Antonio Spurs 2010 Offseason thread



This season was a disappointment. It was Tony's turn this year to get repeatedly injured. Mason played like a D-Leaguer. Tim played well in the first half and then slowed down. Manu played like crap in the first half and then became SuperManu. RJ . . . ugh. All in all, a really uneven season that saw the team finally come together at the end, but it wasn't nearly enough.

On the bright side, DeJuan Blair and George Hill have shown that they will be fantastic complementary players for Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili. And now Bonner, Mason, and Bogans are free agents. So maybe Duncan's window isn't closed just yet.

PG

Tony Parker had a down year. His numbers were down across the board, and he only played 56 games. When he was healthy, he seemed to be somewhat hesitant and slower than normal. I don't know if that's a sign of things to come for him, but all the talk about trading Parker is ridiculous, IMO. Parker is the closest thing the Spurs have to a "true point guard" -- which is pretty funny.

George Hill stepped up big time when Parker was hurt. I freaking love Hill. I don't think his ceiling is all that high, but I imagine he'll continue to improve his shooting and ballhandling. He's going to be a great all-around player at the 1 and the 2.

The Spurs could use a decent 3rd PG. I don't think Garrett Temple is that guy.

SG/SF

Coming off of ANOTHER injury-plagued season, Manu Ginobili started the 2009-2010 campaign playing like a slightly-more-mobile Thunder Dan Majerle. He was playing inside the offense, taking outside shots, and generally ceasing to be the focal point for opposing defenses. Something happened in the Spring. It's like he suddenly became confident and began slashing and creating and throwing incredible passes. His defense was solid. It was, arguably, the best Manu Ginobili I have ever seen. As always, injuries are a concern going forward. But it's looking like he's going to have another offseason of no NT play, so the extra rest makes me optimistic.

Mason and Bogans were pretty useless this season. At his best this season, Mason was a decent, but not great, shooter. He was a total liability on defense. Bogans was a horrendous player on offense, but -- at his best -- a dogged defender in the mold of Bowen. (But not as long or crafty.) Bogans would be the more attractive option to stay if he had developed a reliable corner 3, but I think his tenure is over. Good riddance to the both of them.

RJ. Mothertrucking RJ. Talk about an up-and-down season. Heck, every single game felt like an up-and-down season for RJ. For much of the season, Pop played RJ mostly alongside Parker and Hill while Manu rested. In other words, RJ was out there with two scoring guards and was basically forced to fend for himself. Pop FAIL. Eventually he figured out that RJ needed a creator (like he had with Kidd in NJ) and put Manu in with RJ for most of RJ's minutes. That worked remarkably well when things were clicking. But RJ still struggled with his shot, he failed to attack the rim consistently, and his defensive lapses were maddening (though that might have something to do with player he replaced.) His contract is expiring, so it would seem that he's tradable. Relying on Manu's health for RJ's productivity seems like a waste of $15 million per season. Still, strangely, I kinda want to see what he can do in his second season under Pop.

So the Spurs might be OK parting with Mason and Bogans and keeping Manu and RJ. Malik Hairston can be a capable backup at SG/SF, IMO. That leaves at least one other spot to fill.

PF/C

Tim Duncan looked like 2007 Tim Duncan early in the season. He was carrying the team up until the All-Star break when, almost like clockwork, he started to break down. He got sluggish on both ends, he had no lift on his shot, and he had trouble defending the pick-n-roll. He still played well, but he clearly could not shoulder the load on his own as defensive anchor and offensive post presence. He needs help. Not much else to say about that.

Antonio McDyess, on the other hand, played like crap for the first 3/4 of the season. He was lost out there. There's no other way to put it. But somehow, his 18-footer magically appeared. He rebounded, he hustled, and, best of all, he did a spectacular job defending Dirk. He's earned another look, despite his age.

DeJuan Blair was a pleasant surprise. The rookie was an absolute ballhawk. When he gets near the rim, he's money. No ACLs, no problem. He needs to work on his defense, though. He needs to stop defending with his hands. He's always in foul trouble, it seems. And he needs to develop an outside shot if he wants to share the court with Timmy. You can't have both playing at the same time, since they tend to occupy the same space and DeJuan is only 6'6" or something. I think he should watch Charles Barkley videos all summer and workout with Paul Millsap.

Matt Bonner. I love him. But if he can't hit a shot, he needs to go. His defense this season was better than usual, which is to say, it was serviceable. But still -- he's only useful if he's hitting shots and stretching the floor. He didn't do that this year, perhaps because of his hand injury. But I think it might be time for him to go.

So the Spurs definitely need a player or two at PF/C. Splitter is possibly coming over, which would be nice since the Spurs currently only have 1 player taller than 6'10". And a defensive-minded PF/C would make sense.


In summary: Mason, Bogans, and Bonner should not be re-signed. Hairston should expect a larger role next season. Splitter should be signed. The Spurs should draft/sign a backup SG/SF, a third-string PG, and a backup PF/C.

Parker - Hill - ? (Temple) ?
Manu - Hill - ?
RJ - Hairston - ?
Duncan - Blair - ?
Splitter - McDyess - ?

[ Edited by dobophile on Jun 2, 2010 at 7:37 AM ]
Fantastic, spot-on analysis, dobo.

Is it bad that I LOL'd at the hopes of Splitter coming over? I think the first time I read about him possibly coming over was in 2004.

I hate to say this because I have a ton of respect for your franchise, but I think that 2010 was your last real chance, and I think your best course of action would be to avoid additional long term commitments in terms of salary. You guys currently have $39M in salary committed to the 2011-12 season, and the offseason beforehand could be a good opportunity to rebuild. (although a lockout looms)

There will inevitably be a couple of losers in this year's free agent class, and Tony Parker might be attractive to those teams. The Spurs could parlay him into a young prospect or two, plus picks, and maintain their cap flexibility going forward. All of this hinges on how ready Hill is to take the reigns. I think he is.

Carmelo Anthony is a free agent in 2011, and I think the idea of him with an aging Duncan, Manu, & an ever-improving Hill would be an intriguing combination that could help the Spurs reload instead of rebuild.
The good thing about Splitter is that he's no longer on the rookie scale. He was drafted in 2007, and the Spurs' first crack at him was the 2008 offseason. This is their second crack at him. They can offer him the MLE, AFAIK.

It has seemed like forever since the Spurs started going after him, though.

If Splitter comes over, that would be incredible. Not because he's going to be a superstar or anything. It just would be nice to have a younger guy in there, a 7 footer who can play high to Duncan's low, and capably defend the pick-n-roll. Ian Mahinmi ain't cutting it.

I agree that the window is likely over, at least with Duncan as the superstar. The Spurs are likely entering a period where they have no superstar, but three sub-superstars (Duncan, Ginobili, Parker) and three sub-sub-superstars (Hill, Blair, Splitter ). By sub-superstar, I mean All-Star caliber players. By sub-sub-superstar, I mean a notch below that.
Originally posted by LA9erFan:
Fantastic, spot-on analysis, dobo.

Is it bad that I LOL'd at the hopes of Splitter coming over? I think the first time I read about him possibly coming over was in 2004.

I hate to say this because I have a ton of respect for your franchise, but I think that 2010 was your last real chance, and I think your best course of action would be to avoid additional long term commitments in terms of salary. You guys currently have $39M in salary committed to the 2011-12 season, and the offseason beforehand could be a good opportunity to rebuild. (although a lockout looms)

There will inevitably be a couple of losers in this year's free agent class, and Tony Parker might be attractive to those teams. The Spurs could parlay him into a young prospect or two, plus picks, and maintain their cap flexibility going forward. All of this hinges on how ready Hill is to take the reigns. I think he is.

Carmelo Anthony is a free agent in 2011, and I think the idea of him with an aging Duncan, Manu, & an ever-improving Hill would be an intriguing combination that could help the Spurs reload instead of rebuild.

I agree with you for the most part. 2009-2010 was our last REAL chance with the Big Three. In order for us to make another run, we will need another legit presence on the court to do it because Duncan is no longer there. He will get that 19 rebound 24 to 32 point game, but he can't carry it for an entire season, especially with our crazy streaky three point shooting.

Parker really disappointed by showing lack of determination to be a winner. He came back from his ankle injury out of shape and sloppy when he could have been working on strengthening his upper body for his physical penetration game or he could have worked on his 3-point shot during his injury. I know mobility would hinder his 3-point practice but still...Parker is tradable, but I don't see the Spurs doing this.

I'm not sure how active Spurs will be in acquiring a big free agent. What has killed them more than anything is not having a consistent shooter. Bowen was mentioned over and over again because the Spurs missed his side court 3-pointers and the Spurs did very well against the Suns when George Hill was hitting those same threes (note: Spurs controlled majority of the quarters in the Suns series).

George Hill and Manu are really there only consistent shooters from beyond the arc. This team needs that 3rd "money" shooter when needed. Maybe Hill can transition into a 2 shooting guard or something who can also drive to the basket on a defender trying to close out.

I'm going to stop saying Tim Duncan needs help because that would make him the primary option for this team. What this team needs and what it has needed for a long time now is a clean-up starter around the rim who can be on the court at the same time as Duncan. It would be VERY nice if Blair can develop the 10 to 15 footer. Even if that happens, then they will still need someone effective enough when Tim is resting.

Unless we acquire Melo or someone like that, this team has too many holes to make any Championship run. Even with Melo, we still don't have a consistent sharpshooter. THAT 3-point sharpshooter is vital to winning in the NBA in this era.

RJ needs to go. He's killing the spacing of this offense. Repeatedly shooting 19 footers is not going to help in the long run, especially if he's going to be shy on driving to the basket.
[ Edited by Joecool on Jun 2, 2010 at 10:00 AM ]
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

Yeah, that works.
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?

Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?


Originally posted by dobophile:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?



I'd hit it.
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by dobophile:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?



I'd hit it.

Bro that's Nashty.
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?

Man, I wish we had a one man "team" like the Lakers.
Originally posted by Joecool:
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?

Man, I wish we had a one man "team" like the Lakers.

Even in this thread about your own teams offseason, you have to talk about the Lakers! Infatuated much?!?
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by Joecool:
Originally posted by StOnEy333:
Originally posted by TheSixthRing:
Sub-sub-superstar?

Couldn't you just call them, oh I don't know, solid players?

On a sub-sub team, does it matter?

Man, I wish we had a one man "team" like the Lakers.

Even in this thread about your own teams offseason, you have to talk about the Lakers! Infatuated much?!?

Seriously? We were talking about the "next" step for the Spurs. I have no problem with your comment and you are welcome here to post that kind of stuff all you want but don't dish it out if you can't handle it in return.
Originally posted by dobophile:
The good thing about Splitter is that he's no longer on the rookie scale. He was drafted in 2007, and the Spurs' first crack at him was the 2008 offseason. This is their second crack at him. They can offer him the MLE, AFAIK.

It has seemed like forever since the Spurs started going after him, though.

If Splitter comes over, that would be incredible. Not because he's going to be a superstar or anything. It just would be nice to have a younger guy in there, a 7 footer who can play high to Duncan's low, and capably defend the pick-n-roll. Ian Mahinmi ain't cutting it.

I agree that the window is likely over, at least with Duncan as the superstar. The Spurs are likely entering a period where they have no superstar, but three sub-superstars (Duncan, Ginobili, Parker) and three sub-sub-superstars (Hill, Blair, Splitter ). By sub-superstar, I mean All-Star caliber players. By sub-sub-superstar, I mean a notch below that.

I still have questions about Blair's ability to contribute deep in the playoffs. As good as he is on the boards and around the hoop, he's just so damn short, relatively speaking. In a 7 game series, I'm exploiting that matchup time and time again.

He'll continue to get better, but that's a fatal flaw, IMO. I can't think of many contributing players on upper echelon teams that fit his mold.
[ Edited by LA9erFan on Jun 2, 2010 at 11:05 AM ]