Summer rewind: San Antonio Spurs
Previous teams in the series: Hawks | Nets | Clippers | Timberwolves | Jazz | Hornets | Kings | Pacers | Magic | Suns | Knicks | Grizzlies | Raptors | Mavericks | Celtics | Pelicans | 76ers
A look at the key offseason moves and changes for every team in the league. Next up are the San Antonio Spurs.
The youth movement
San Antonio has an aging core and needed an infusion of young talent.
With first-round pick Dejounte Murray (19 years old), 2013 first-round pick Livio Jean-Charles (22) and 2011 second-round pick Davis Bertans (23) joining All-Star Kawhi Leonard (25) and 2014 first-round pick Kyle Anderson (22), San Antonio now has a mix of young players to complement a veteran roster.
All three draft picks come to the Spurs at different stages of development.
Murray, who played one year at Washington, has the tools league executives look for. However, as he displayed during summer league, the 6-foot-5 combo guard is still a work in progress and will gain from the mentorship from guards Tony Parker and Patty Mills.
Jean-Charles, a 6-9 forward, has stagnated the past few years while playing in France and should spend the bulk of the season playing for the Spurs’ NBA Development League team in Austin.
The 6-9 Bertans is perhaps ready to play in the NBA right now.
Though a learning curve is to be expected, Bertans played at the highest level the past two seasons in Spain and the previous year in Serbia.
Following last summer’s blueprint
The Spurs, coming off a difficult playoff exit once again, had the free agencies of Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili dictate their offseason plans.
San Antonio, one of the handful of teams without cap space, gained some flexibility with the retirement of future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan.
Like the trade last offseason of Tiago Splitter to Atlanta that opened up cap space to sign LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio followed the same script in trading Boris Diaw to Utah.
With Duncan retired and Diaw’s salary removed, the Spurs were able to add former All-Star Pau Gasol.
Gasol, a 36-year-old who has missed only 14 games the past two seasons while averaging more than 33 minutes, gives the Spurs a short-term solution who still contributes at a high level.
So long, No. 21
Few athletes in any sport have had the impact Tim Duncan had on the Spurs. In his 19 seasons he defined the “Spurs way” and made San Antonio a marquee franchise.
Although San Antonio returns the core pieces of a team that won 67 games, Duncan’s presence will be missed.
1. LaMarcus Aldridge $20,575,005
2. Kawhi Leonard $17,638,063
3. Pau Gasol $15,500,000
4. Tony Parker $14,445,313
5. Manu Ginobili $14,000,000
6. Danny Green $10,000,000
7. Patty Mills $3,578,948
8. Dewayne Dedmon $2,898,000
9. David Lee $1,551,659
10. Kyle Anderson $1,192,080
11. Livio Jean-Charles $1,188,840
12. Dejounte Murray $1,180,080
13. Jonathon Simmons $874,636
14. Davis Bertans $543,471
15. Ryan Arcidiacono $543,471
16. Bryn Forbes $543,471
17. Patricio Garino $543,471
Tim Duncan $1,881,250
Salary table 2016
Guaranteed salaries $105,466,095
Dead money $1,881,250
Tax variance $1,416,735
Free-agent cap holds $0
Incomplete roster charge $0
Salaries: cap $108,677,758
Salaries: tax $110,094,493
Salary cap $94,143,000
Luxury tax $113,287,000
Cap space None ($14,534,758 over)
Tax room $3,192,507
The Spurs, technically over the cap when free agency began, got cap space with Duncan’s retirement and the Diaw trade.
With a small cap hit for Duncan and Diaw’s $7 million salary removed, San Antonio uses the room to sign Gasol. Then San Antonio used Bird rights to sign Manu Ginobili.
Center Dewayne Dedmon was signed to the room midlevel exception and veteran David Lee to the veteran minimum.
Free agents signed in the offseason cannot be traded until either Dec. 15, Jan. 15 or for three months if they signed after Sept. 15.
Gasol, Lee, Dedmon, Bryn Forbes, Patricio Garino and Ryan Arcidiacono cannot be traded until Dec. 15.
Ginobili cannot be traded until Jan. 15 because he was signed using Bird rights and his current salary exceeds his previous one by 20 percent.
Ginobili also falls under the one-year Bird restriction and cannot be traded without his approval. If Ginobili approves a trade, his early Bird rights will not carry to his new team.
Starter Bench Bench
PG Tony Parker Patty Mills/Dejounte Murray Ryan Arcidiacono/Bryn Forbes
SG Danny Green Manu Ginobili Jonathon Simmons
SF Kawhi Leonard Kyle Anderson Davis Bertans/Patricio Garino
PF LaMarcus Aldridge David Lee Livio Jean-Charles
C Pau Gasol Dewayne Dedmon
San Antonio has 14 guaranteed contracts.
Arcidiacono ($75,000), Forbes ($125,000) and Garino ($100,000) are signed to partially guaranteed contracts.
The Spurs, with one of the top D-League teams, would have the rights to all three players if they were to be waived during training camp.
SNEAK PEEK TO NEXT SUMMER
Gasol’s player option will dictate the Spurs’ flexibility next summer.
San Antonio, right at the cap with Gasol’s salary and Mills’ free-agent cap hold, has shown it can create cap space when its budget is limited.
If Gasol does opt out, along with Dedmon (player option) and Lee, San Antonio could have $20 million in room.
KEEP AN EYE ON
The second piece in the 2011 draft-night trade for Leonard has serious talent.
Though the impact might not be felt during the early part of the season, Bertans played in one of the top international leagues (Spanish ACB) and has the versatility to play small forward and power forward.
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