The NBA Restart offers a short but important test bed for the San Antonio Spurs. At 27-36, four games behind Memphis Grizzlies’ eighth place, there is a lot to overcome for the next eight match-ups to determine the seeding and back-end of the playoff.
In what basically equates to a showcase, however, some Spurs still have a chance to shine in the Disney World bubble. From contractual implications to positioning in the team, there is an opportunity to finish strong, before perhaps entering the most uniquely structured low season of the NBA.
LaMarcus Aldridge. for ESPN, it has already been ruled out for the rest of the season due to April shoulder surgery, but other veterans and youth are available to lead the way:
Pre-shutdown, Derrick White’s third season ended without an increase in role, but a jump to 10.4 points per game from 2018-19 and a slight increase in percentage of 3 points to 35.6. Most of the production came off the bench, rather than the 55 of 61 games started out as a second year.
Future contract extension dates now differ due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Spurs had a decision on White’s future for October, whether he would receive an extension or become a limited free agent in the summer of 2021.
San Antonio has already given Dejounte Murray a lucrative four-year deal as a future RFA, but has cemented it as a starting point guard. White, while an occasional appetizer, made 48 appearances from the bench, although he played 24.1 minutes per game. It had enough role, but will choosing the first round of 2017 become part of the long-term future?
So a strong finish at least gives White and Spurs more momentum to reflect. His role may remain the same for these past eight games, barring injury or COVID-19 results, but there is an opportunity to increase his value.
The arrest rejected all NBA dates, including decisions about player options. DeMar DeRozan’s decision to exercise has been called one of the most important free agencies of 2020.
DeRozan will be one of the most important names of the low season on the market, but it is if he decides to give up and it depends on the situation of the cap. Playing above and beyond the fact that the lone alpha can increase its potential free-agent stock, but it may be questionable if it returns for another $ 27.73 million in 2020-21.
With only nine games on his NBA resuming as a rookie, Keldon Johnson has played four in the past few days before shutting down, gaining 16.7 minutes per game. Swaying Rudy Gay into section four more often should create more time for Johnson. Otherwise, the coherent role he was acquiring may be there, as Spurs don’t just play for seed #. 8, but for the future.
Lonnie Walker’s first full year in the lead role of the NBA has not been as consistent as his Spurs predecessors, including the fall from rotation. He had played in every game from December 28 to March 3, but only 6.4 points per game with 42.9 percent shooting. Only five appearances scored double numbers in the score.
As with Johnson, playing for the future allows someone like Walker to spend more minutes. Also, the Spurs alternatives aren’t as inspiring off the bench after Derrick White. Regardless of whether the Miami product is in trouble, it will have a chance to step up.
No LaMarcus Aldridge leaves the door open for minutes, with a collection of bigs to handle the load. Jakob Poeltl, a traditional center, thinks he can keep his 16-20 minutes per game role, but the battle over time alongside him is a secondary storyline. Rudy Gay could do more stretching four times, but Trey Lyles ranks as the final beneficiary.
Starting 53 games out of 63, Lyles played alongside Aldridge in the attacking zone, averaging 6.4 points and 5.7 rebounds in 20.2 minutes. The goalkeeper striker seemed to find ground with extra play time before the shutdown, however, with 15.6 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks in six games. It also hit 2.7 out of 5.7 attempts from 3 points per race.
Lyles has an unsecured $ 5.5 million in the 2020-21 period, so playing and taking a step forward in adversity helps his cause guarantee money. The Spurs, in both cases, can opt for financial flexibility in an unknown situation with the 2020-21 wage limit, but Lyles will continue to support his long-term cause in the city of Alamo or elsewhere as a facade reserve.