Spurs forced to suffer fools gladly

by

Amusing as it is was to watch Isiah Thomas sign Jerome James to a contract more loaded than his waist line while teaming Stephon Marbury and Steve Francis with Larry Brown, and thankful as San Antonio is for the finest stretch of basketball in Nazr Mohammed’s career, these general managers have to stop.

Because funny though it may be to watch a David Kahn try and build an NBA roster by drafting and signing multiple players at only one position each year (if you bring in five point guards, one has to stick right?) eventually they will find a way for ineptitude to damage more than their own team. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo sports reported:

There were undoubtedly some eyes rolling into the backs of heads in the Spurs’ front office with the Minnesota Timberwolves close to an agreement with European center Nikola Pekovic(notes) on a three-year, $13 million contract. The Spurs are negotiating to bring over 2008 first-round pick Tiago Splitter(notes) this summer, and Pekovic’s deal promises to elevate Splitter’s leverage.

A 7-foot center from Brazil, Splitter is considered a far superior prospect to Pekovic. The Spurs’ ability to pay Splitter from its midlevel exception and still have some of that money to use on another free agent has been somewhat compromised.

The lavish and foolish spending has pushed average free agents beyond the Spurs reach, created dramatic shifts in power, and eventually will cost us one of the final years of Tim Duncan’s career.

Joe Johnson given a max deal. Rudy Gay provided the same. Then there are the Channing Frye’s and Darko Milicic’s of the world gaining premium dollar in a market featuring a number of teams that stockpiled cap space without really planning on what to do with it. At the rate teams are spending, there is a slight chance that Richard Jefferson opting out is not as foolish as it once seemed.

The San Antonio Spurs can only be thankful that they resigned Manu Ginobili when they did. ESPN’s John Hollinger credited R.C. Buford with being one of the smartest general managers in the league for getting his work done early in a market that is vastly inflating players’ value.

Several GMs have looked at the landscape and realized this phenomenon, which is why the bidding has increased on even secondary players. It only makes sense — a rising tide lifts all boats. If the players normally targeted with midlevel money are suddenly angling for much bigger prizes, it means lesser players now become targets for the midlevel.

So why should San Antonio Spurs fans care about a free agent summer that their team did not have the resources to join in the first place? Because for teams like the Memphis Grizzlies or Minnesota Timberwolves, the contracts of today will eventually turn into the Pau Gasol’s little brothers of tomorrow. In some ways, Chris Wallace’s Gasol blunder marked the end of the current San Antonio run.

For the Spurs it was the end of the three-stars and defense philosophy that held them atop the league for most of the decade. It was also perhaps the beginning of the end for Bruce Bowen. Though age and slippage had something to do with it, the Spurs began to ween themselves off of defensive stalwarts like Bowen and Kurt Thomas in favor of the extra offense Michael Finley and Matt Bonner offered in hopes of keeping pace with the Laker’s juggernaut.

After the trade Gregg Popovich joked that there should be a trade committee to scrap such horrible deals. While no such committee will ever exist, the NBA does have one means of protecting itself from some of the foolish, excess spending, and it’s one that causes suffering for us all.

It’s called a lockout, and it could end the Spurs as we know them.

At some point during the season the owners and players will get together and the owners will try to convince players that there is not enough money to go around in the current system and keep the NBA viable. It’s a position that would have been hard to sell under any circumstances. But now that position has been compromised even further.

Because in a summer where David Kahn and Chris Wallace handed out large sums of money to Darko Milicic and Rudy Gay, with owners willingly cutting the checks, how can they argue there is no money to spend?

So there is a chance Richard Jefferson signs a large contract somewhere, and deep inside Spurs country there will be jokes made and fans amused, but be warned: nothing good comes from suffering fools gladly.

  • DNITCH

    Well the rumor on ESPN today is that the Knicks are still going to try and covet Parker once they sign Amar’e and there is a possibility of a sign and trade that involves David Lee. I just dont see it happening though, especially if Tiago comes over.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    RE: Hill’s “point guard” play while Parker was out.

    Guys, there is way too much being put on that stretch of the season. If you read the box score, then sure, it appears that Hill is ready to step in and replace a lot of Parker’s production. But what you need to do is go back and watch game film.

    Manu Ginobili was the defacto point guard the entire time Tony Parker was out with Mason handling the duties alongside Hill when Manu was getting a breather.

    Leaving Hill as the only point guard would mean you’re relying on Manu Ginobili to stay healthy and play big minutes all season long. Not a likely or good proposition.

    And David Lee does not shore up our needs. Again, he’s a box score acquisition. I know the excitement of seeing a “center/pf” with a double-double in the box score, but he is undersized and terrible on defense. It’d be better, and far, far cheaper, to just teach Blair a jumper. Lee would be a bad acquisition, especially if we’re picking up Splitter.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    “Again, why get an overpriced stretch four at the cost of our starting point guard when we will have Duncan and mcdyess next year who both have a good outside game”

    Duncan has a good outside game? Really? Hmm
    Dice has a solid 17 footer, no doubt. Doesn’t really compare to a 4 that shoots 40% from 3 does it?

    “then if hill looks as good at pg before the trade deadline, then you do a deal for players that address a need”

    At that point finding a backup PG would be much harder. Also, Spurs teams usually play the first half of the season figuring things out. Pop experiments with lineups, minutes, matchups, etc… Spurs teams that have gone on to championships kick @ss on the rodeo road trip and the rest of the season. Tough to do that when making big roster changes at the trade deadline.

    “but that we should get back equal talent, talent commensurate with tp,”

    That is not going to happen. The Spurs are not in a powerful negotiating position. Getting two good/great 3 pt shooters is crucial. Do you think Manu, Hill and RJ is enough from downtown?

    ” Other 3 pt shooters can be had and without all the limitations of a gimmicky stretch 4″

    First off, Danilo is a 3. An athletic big who can move his feet and play D AND shoot the 3 at a 39% clip. Oh, by the way, he is 21 and will only get better. Not alot of limitations there.
    Second, what is gimmicky about a stretch 4? Was Robert Horry gimmicky? If so, that is a damn fine gimmick.
    Third, what is your suggestion for getting shooters without a trade?

    “The reason I’m not worried about an upgrade over bonner is because of the way that the spurs can now go back to playing twin towers inside the paint with a guy like splitter”

    So you are saying that getting Splitter is enough to get us back into contention. Ask around if you think that is true.

    “Trading for murphey and galinari with Parker isn’t happening,”

    I never said it was. I gave plenty of solid reasons why it SHOULD.

    “unlike going into the season with a single proven pg”

    The 2007 championship we had Tony, Jacque Vaughn and Beno Udrich as point guards. Beno was so young and inexperienced, Pop would not even play him. Basically, all we had was Tony and Jacque. So was Jacque a proven PG? Hell no, he was an experienced backup with way less talent.
    It worked in a championship year.

    “For 2.5 mil a season and no more than 15 mins a game, bonner is the best choice for NOW”

    Bonner made 3.2 Million last year and we’ll see if he gets more lucrative offers.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    there is a possibility of a sign and trade that involves David Lee.

    Forget about Lee, we want Danilo or forget it.

  • ThatBigGuy

    ESPN Rumor has Parker and Amar’e wanting to play together in New York.

    “Amar’e Stoudemire is expected to sign a deal with the Knicks next Thursday or Friday. Once that’s done the focus could turn to Spurs point guard Tony Parker.

    According to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, a source said Stoudemire and Parker want to play together in either Miami or New York.”

    “It’s perfect for Tony because he wants to be in New York and he wants to play with Amar’e,” the source told Isola.

    Parker still has one more season on his contract so the only way to get him to New York is via a trade. One potential scenario could have David Lee going to San Antonio for Parker via a sign-and-trade.”

    I really hope this is false. I don’t want to give up an All-Star for a guy who cannot play defense. That is a HORRIBLE scenario.

  • Hurm66

    In every other major sport the commissioners office can veto a one sided trade (see Oakland A’s via the early to mid-70′s) – except basketball. The Gasol trade ruined the NBA and provided an undeserving Laker team with two championships. That team was nothing more that a perennial first round loser before.

    Jerry West was the GM at Memphis and suddenly “retires” and becomes a consultant with the Lakers and this ridiculous trade happens in January without a bidding war at the trade deadline?!?!?!?

    It slayed me and the Spurs and the rest of the fans of the sport in the process. It was the moment (along with Game 7 of the Lakers vs. Kings serious of 2002) that I lost some of the blind passion for the sport because you can’t help but feel that David Stern has his invisible hand in all of this.

    Now ESPN says something about how the Cavs can trade Delonte, Williams and Verajao for Okafor and CP3. Really? This is what it has become now. I’d happily move Parker, Blair and whatever else for those same two and the Hornets would get more than if they made that terrible trade with the Cavs.

    Lastly I hear all this chatter about TP to NY or Miami. Forget David Lee – nice player but if we get Splitter there’s no real place for him. I want Danilo Gallinari part of any deal there. How about Lee and Gallinari for TP and Blair and turn around and move Lee to Miami for their pieces?

    With Miami – I can actually see that one happening but it would cost them Beasley, Chalmers and Wright. We’d have to throw in something extra just for the sake of warm bodies, but I’d do that trade.

    Beasley is the offense we need – would thrive on the floor with Manu. Chalmers has length and would be a typically solid Spur back-up and Wright is the missing piece on defense that would elevate the Spurs.

    How about Lee and Gallinari for TP and Blair and turn around and move Lee to Miami for their pieces?

    If Miami gets screwed with LBJ and Wade (shudder!) I can see them desperately doing this move and getting Boozer or Lee and other pieces to compensate. Interesting time for the Spurs.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    “Leaving Hill as the only point guard would mean you’re relying on Manu Ginobili to stay healthy and play big minutes all season long. Not a likely or good proposition”

    Look Jesse, Hill took the point during that stretch just fine. I agree that Manu demanded the ball when the pressure was on. Hill will learn to assert himself more and more, just like when he waved Manu off the ball vs the Mavs (game 3 I think). We need to bolster our roster and this is the best way. Trading an all star who will most certainly be gone next year.

    Don’t you think Danilo would be an outstanding pick up?

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    Blair shouldn’t go anywher IMO. Package Dice with Tony, but not Blair.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    As far as backups go:

    Ridnour shoots a bit better and defends better
    Duhon shoots the 3 a bit better

    Personally, I’d prefer Ridnour just because of his free throws and inside the arc shooting. Either one would work just fine as an insurance policy and would save 6 Mil and would allow us to get Brewer.

    Hill-Ridnour

    Anderson-Manu-Gee

    Gallinari-Brewer

    Blair-Dice

    Splitter-Duncan

  • Greg

    I would hate to see Blair leave ! He only played 3 games with out TD last year. 1 vs. Oklahoma 2 vs. sophmore challenge (all stars) 3 vs. Dallas he averaged more than 20 points and 20 rebounds in all three games. Blair has three more years on his contract at under one million per year. Virtually impossible to replace dollar for dollar. Lets see how good he can get before getting trade happy. just my opinion

  • lvmainman

    @ Greyberger,

    You never answered the question! As a GM would you deal Jackson for Radmanovic/Bell – 1 expiring contract or Bonner/Mason – 2 expiring contracts?

    @ Jim Henderson,

    My reference to Bell “will never play” pertained only to last year. He never played with the Bobcats(5 games), why would he all of a sudden be able to play with the Warriors after being traded?

  • Hobson13

    It appears that Amare Stoudamire is pretty much going to NY. I don’t know where some of you are getting your information regarding Parker wanting to go to NY, but it does make sense. If the Knicks get Amare, Parker would definitely be a great Pick and Roll partner with him. NY would also have the cap room to absorb his contract PLUS offer him an extension, which he would probably accept.

    At this point, I’m not a huge fan of trading Parker, but we have to honest about our situation as a team. Even with Parker and RJ, we don’t have the firepower to beat the big boys. Sure Phoenix will be worse next year since Stoudamire is gone, but the Lakers and many other teams will be better next year. We are indeed in an arms race.

    As of right now, we need Splitter big time, but we also need 2 other good bench players (this is assuming Anderson can come in and play decently if not then we could use 3), 1 starting SF (Maybe Haiston can help us out…) and another shot blocking big wouldn’t hurt. So in essence we need, at the minimum, Splitter plus 3 other players. Now with RJ opting out, I read that we are about $4 mil under the cap. I think we could offer an underrated guy like Ronnie Brewer a 4 year $16 mil deal. Ronnie is a great defender and can play 2 positions. He would be a great pickup.

    After that contract, our cap space would be up and we would be forced to negotiate a trade (or sign and trade). Perhaps we can force a sign and trade with RJ (I have no interest seeing him in silver and black), but if a team like the knicks has the cap room, why would they hook us up? The surest way is to trade Parker in a sign and trade to get back guys like Anthony Morrow, Mike Miller, etc. (I’m just throwing out examples). I don’t want to trade Parker, but with RJ, our trade chip, opting out, it may be the surest way of getting back the pieces we need. Even if Malik Hairston averages 15/8 we won’t have what we need to really compete as this team is currently constructed.

    P.S. Lee is a sexy addition on paper, but would, in reality, be a redundant and expensive pickup for the Spurs. Lets do a Tony for Lebron trade!! (J/K.)

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    George Hill was a point guard in name and defensive assignment only. The fact of the matter is that he was assisted on over half his buckets, with a good number of non-assisted buckets coming in transition. He also averaged fewer assists than any starting point guard this side of Derek Fisher.

    In other words, while he provided some points and defense, he neither created his own shot nor created opportunities for others. When Ginobili went to the bench during that stretch, Hill usually played in tandem with Roger Mason jr. with Mason manning the ball handling duties.

    The Spurs played lights out during that stretch because Manu Ginobili emerged as a top ten NBA player, not because Hill was at the point over Tony Parker. And the load he had to carry may have wore him out by the time we hit the Phoenix series–which, once the Suns eliminated Manu as a playmaker, Hill struggled mightily.

    I love Hill as a player, but as a shooting guard he’s a strength, as a point guard he’s merely adequate. Your team is better with him as a shooting guard.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    Manu struggled in the playoffs just after his nose was broken. Coincidence? I think not.

    So what you’re saying is that the Spurs can not trade Parker. Ok. I disagree but we’ll move past that. How do we get increased shooting? Or do we have enough now? How do we get more perimeter defense? Are you saying we have to stand pat with the exception of Splitter and the LLE?

    If you say we can’t trade TP, ow exactly will our roster (in your opinion) shape up?

  • http://wallmart.com roboSID

    GASOL TRADE punked us.We didnt even try to go big vs his softness.We TRIED to out “smart them”with trick-e BONNER LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! u dont sacrifce 2 post playerZ ,high percentage shots, “dunks and put backs”= for 4 people shooting low percentage 3′s.PETER HOLT are you listening?Thats where a coach with nba playing time vs one that doesnt KNOWS better.

  • http://wallmart.com roboSID

    THE REAL fun begins @ Vegas when Ryan Richards twops 40+ 3 pointers and Decolo out shines Gee

  • doggydogworld

    @Hobson, ignore any trade trial balloons coming from the NY Press. NY teams use local media as their personal propagana outlets (literally in the case of Newsday and MSG network, both owned by the same group as the Knicks).

    Spurs ex-RJ are not 4m under the cap due to cap holds. And even if we were under, signing Ronnie Brewer for 4/16 would mean we lose the MLE and can’t sign Splitter.

    @Lenneezz. George Hill brought the ball to half court, handed to Manu and jogged to Bowen corner. This put the entire offensive load on Manu’s back. That works for a few weeks but if you try it for 100+ games Manu will break down. Also, George was by far our worst player against Phoenix. I like him but it’s absurd to think he can replace Tony yet.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    Shooting would be nice, but you do not trade an important and unique skill set to shore up one that is so abundant in the league. I’m not saying Parker is untradeable, but if you are going to then you better be getting someone you can run your entire offense through for long stretches. Because as it stands, Duncan is no longer a promise to draw double teams and Manu is the only other player on the roster who can break down a defense.

    Duhon and Galo are nice, nice shooters. But they got those three-pointers off in a system that generates them in abundance. San Antonio once got its open three-point looks off of Duncan posts, but now get them increasingly off the dribble penetration of Manu and Tony. Why trade for shooters if you risk losing the means to getting them open shots? That aside, none of it addresses the defense, which was the HUGE problem with the Spurs against the Suns.

    The Spurs get shooting from George Hill, James Anderson, and Manu Ginobili. Maybe even Matt Bonner for some stretches. You hope that one of the three DLeague prospects develops enough to provide defense and shooting (Hairston, Temple, Gee). And you find a shooter on the cheap.

    Of course, all that goes out the window if you get an insane offer for Parker. And I’m not convinced Tony Parker is a future Laker or Knick as many tend to believe. The impending lockout, a player unfriendly CBA, and the fact that most teams with cap space are blowing it this summer lead me to believe that the Spurs have the most leverage.

  • Hobson13

    doggydogworld
    July 3rd, 2010 at 1:26 pm
    “@Hobson, ignore any trade trial balloons coming from the NY Press.”

    Yeah, I agree that there’s a lot of sh*t floating around with this big free agent orgy. However, if NY loses out on the big 3 (and they very well might) then they might make us an offer we can’t refuse. NY will get big names this summer (more than Amare) if they have to sell their soul. They’ve simply done too much over the past few years not to make a big splash. They’ve promised the fans too much not to come through with at least 2 big names this summer. From the Knicks perspective, Parker makes perfect sense to add along with Amare and certainly would fit in the NY scene nicely. I’m not saying a NY trade is going to happen, but it makes sense for the Knicks to try. Real hard.

    “Spurs ex-RJ are not 4m under the cap due to cap holds.”

    I’m not necessarily arguing with you, but this article indicates differently. It’s the first time I’ve heard we were under the cap. Perhaps the article is wrong…

    http://www.statesman.com/sports/pro/great-news-for-spurs-jefferson-is-out-779576.html?cxtype=ynews_rss

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    I hear what you’re saying about how the Spurs offense is going to work. I agree that Duncan is not the automatic double team he once was. But, you are wrong when you say that Manu and Tony are the only players that can break down a defense.

    First off, Hill can get past his man. Second, the Spurs pass the ball as good as, if not better than any other team in the NBA. The Spurs now use crisp passing and cutting rather than passing into Duncan and just waiting for a double team. We still go inside out but, it is done differently. Third, we will now have the size to play high/low offense. Fourth, we will be stronger on the glass compared to the last 2 years. You believe the offense will stagnate with Tony. I believe the offense will simply adapt.

    By trading Tony, the Spurs will be addressing defense. Danilo is an upgrade of RJ and having the extra cap space allows the Spurs to sign Ronnie Brewer, who provides exactly what the Spurs need.

    You are counting on Anderson, a rookie to provide 3 pt shooting. You are “hoping” that one of our D-leaguers will develop a shot. Boner’s problems on the court have been well documented (choking, generates tiny amounts of free throws, etc….) I just don’t agree with hoping for things to happen. Danilo is a great 3 pt shooter. He is also 6 ft friggin 10 at the 3 spot. You also add shooting by subtraction. For all the great things that Tony does, 3 pt shooting is not one of them. Duhon or Ridnour will be better than he was.

    I just see all these benefits of trading Tony now, rather than keeping Tony a year and then still having all these problems to deal with then. Not to mention, I bet the Knicks would deal the 2011 #1 pick, to save on cap space to help gun for Carmelo.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    Regarding Hill being able to get past his man…Nope. He struggled to exploit Steve Nash.

    Go back and watch that huge game he had against the Lakers. He went off from behind the three point line and he was hot hitting jumpers behind screens. However, rarely did he just flat out drive past Fisher.

    Once the Lakers realized that Duncan was not a threat that night, they focused a little more attention on Hill and shut him out in the second half.

    The Spurs do have some unselfish players who move the ball (historically), but I wouldn’t call them great passers. And even then, their passing is predicated on someone else setting a defense into its rotations by breaking down the initial defense.

    Also, the Knicks 2010 pick went to Utah, so they by law cannot deal their draft pick to us in 2011.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    I firmly believe that the Spurs will be able to break down a defense with screening, cutting and passing. Especially with Splitter, he is a very good passing big man.

  • Jim Henderson

    BALLHOG
    July 3rd, 2010 at 6:35 am

    “Blair should play between the 3, 4, and 5..depending on opponent…”

    No, Blair is a 4, period (he WILL be developing his mid-range jumper – trust me). And Splitter is a 5 – not a good enough handle for a 4.

    Jacob
    July 3rd, 2010 at 7:51 am

    “Again, why get an overpriced stretch four at the cost of our starting point guard when we will have Duncan and mcdyess next year who both have a good outside game?”

    Actually, we don’t need a stretch 4, and we don’t need Matt Bonner. We a SF, a “role player big” that protects the rim, and any/all additions should ideally be a very good defender. WE DON’T NEED A STRETCH FOUR.

    Jesse Blanchard
    July 3rd, 2010 at 8:37 am

    “And David Lee does not shore up our needs. Again, he’s a box score acquisition. I know the excitement of seeing a “center/pf” with a double-double in the box score, but he is undersized and terrible on defense. It’d be better, and far, far cheaper, to just teach Blair a jumper. Lee would be a bad acquisition, especially if we’re picking up Splitter.”

    I agree. Lee is not a good fit. I don’t see a good deal with NY, except perhaps some multi-player combination of Chandler, Gallinari, B. Walker, S. Rodriguez, Duhon, House, draft picks, cash….?

    Lenneezz
    July 3rd, 2010 at 9:06 am

    “Blair shouldn’t go anywher IMO. Package Dice with Tony, but not Blair.”

    I agree. For me, Duncan, Blair, & Hill are the only virtually “untradeable” players on the Spurs.

    Greg
    July 3rd, 2010 at 9:33 am

    You’re exactly right, Greg.

    Hobson13
    July 3rd, 2010 at 10:35 am

    “I think we could offer an underrated guy like Ronnie Brewer a 4 year $16 mil deal. Ronnie is a great defender and can play 2 positions. He would be a great pickup.”

    My understanding is that you can sign players as if you’re “under the cap” AND use the MLE. It’s one or the other.

  • Jim Henderson

    ** Correction**

    My understanding is that you *CAN’T* sign players as if you’re “under the cap” AND use the MLE. It’s one or the other.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    @ Doggydog
    “Also, George was by far our worst player against Phoenix. I like him but it’s absurd to think he can replace Tony yet”

    I think it is absurd to not trade a player that can help fill your teams numerous holes when he is going to walk the next year.

    Obviously, betting all the chips on George being the perfect replacement for Tony is a bit much. However, I do believe that out of George, Luk or Chris and Manu we can get exactly what we need out of the PG position.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    Filling all of your holes at the expense of your teams biggest offensive strength is also a little absurd.

    The Spurs offensive strength is the dribble penetration of Manu and Tony. If you remove that, what are your strengths?

    And how do you know he is going to walk next year?

  • DorieStreet

    Great article–one that every NBA fan should read (along with “Sense of Urgency” (Jan 27th). But I disagree with the paragraph about the Spurs demise. Part of the team became old (we held on to Horry and Finley 1, maybe 2 seasons too long). Acquired too many journeymen (Vaughn) guys at the end of the road (Damien Stoudamire), way past their prime (Kurt Thomas, Antonio McDyess), one dimensional (Mason Jr, Bonner, Bogans). Yeah, we know about the “inside” deals that produce the last 3 champions (then GM McHale at Minnesota=Garnett to Boston; newly ex-GM West at Memphis just before Gasol to LA. But while the Celtics drafted well while they were down (Powe, Kendricks, Davis) and the Lakers traded for Odom & drafted Bynum to forge solid front court play, the Spurs front office went about some of their business like they were a MLB team: 2002-drafted Luis Scola 1st round; waited 5 years before letting him go to Houston (he arguably is the best Rocket player the last 3 seasons). 2005-drafted Ian Mahinmi 1st round; 5 years later (2 in Europe, 2 in the D-league) he played his first full season – 26 games, 9 where he played 8+ minutes and put up decent numbers at best. 2008- drafted Tiago Splitter 1st round. Will he be a Spur this November, or is he on the 5-year plan? Another title for the Spurs while #21 is still in uniform seems unlikely now, unless some roster turnover occurs and the younger players we have improve significantly. Let the front office/coaching staff do their best this offseason and extend the 50-win and playoff streak.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    Oh Jesse, nobody knows for sure what Tony is going to do. I’m sure you read the remark about “spending 8 or 9 years with another team for the second half of my career”. It also makes sense to me.

    And me personally, I would not sign him to what I think will be large contract demands. I think it will be somewhere between 4/52 and 5/75 and I don’t think he is worth it.

    I have explained that I think the team’s offense can evolve into alot of passing, screening and cutting. It helps when you have a 3 that can shoot over people and drive and kick as well. In my scenario we are big, strong and pretty good shooters. We would also go ten deep. Last series with the Suns showed me how that is pretty important. I gather that you didn’t get the same impression.

    Obviously, you are a huge supporter of Tony and think the team can’t thrive without his skills. I think the team can’t improve enough while waiting to hear and then service his demands. Let’s leave it at that.

  • Hobson13

    Jim Henderson
    July 3rd, 2010 at 3:16 pm
    “My understanding is that you *CAN’T* sign players as if you’re “under the cap” AND use the MLE. It’s one or the other.”

    Well then if that article is true and we are under the cap, then we’re screwed. We now have $4 mil to use instead of the MLE of just under $6mil. Can anyone absolutely refute that we are under the cap? Here is the article again. I’m open to any info you cats may have.

    http://www.statesman.com/sports/pro/great-news-for-spurs-jefferson-is-out-779576.html?cxtype=ynews_rss

  • doggydogworld

    @Hobson, the article correctly says “the team has eight players under contract for just over $52 million. The projected salary cap is $56 million”. But they do not include 1.1m guaranteed for Anderson or the 3.1m unguaranteed for Hairston/Gee/Temple/Jerrells. Plus 41m of cap holds for RJ, Bonner, Mason, Mahinmi, Bogans and even Robert Horry and some other retired guys. Even if we cut and renounce everyone we can (which would be dumb) we’re still over 53m. Since you can’t use both cap space and MLE, being 3-4m below the cap is pointless.

    @Lenneezz – Your theory that we can win a championship by introducing a completely different style of offense that Pop and our start has entertainment value, if nothing else.

  • doggydogworld

    Man, this site really needs a preview or edit option. Last sentence should read “….offense that Pop and our stars have never run has entertainment value…..”

  • doggydogworld

    @Hobson, if you are 4m under you can either use the 4m of cap space OR the 5.8m MLE. You just can’t use both. So being a few million under the cap doesn’t mean you’re screwed. But it doesn’t help you, either.

  • http://www.48minutesofhell.com Lenneezz

    Well Dog, then you are narrow minded and stupid. Life in all it’s facets is change.

  • Hobson13

    doggydogworld
    July 3rd, 2010 at 4:59 pm
    “@Hobson, if you are 4m under you can either use the 4m of cap space OR the 5.8m MLE. You just can’t use both. So being a few million under the cap doesn’t mean you’re screwed. But it doesn’t help you, either.”

    Gotcha. Hopefully we can do a sign and trade with RJ and essentially pick the 1-2 FAs we want (Miller, Morrow, Brewer, what have you). I sure hope we can get Splitter for the MLE. After all is said and done, the offseason still hinges upon him.

  • Bushka

    This is wierd.

    It’s like the same conversation over and over.

    Anyway for what it’s worth.

    You win with depth right?

    We have depth now in our guard rotation…right?

    Manu, George, Tony.

    32 minutes per night IF all three are healthy.

    Anderson will pick up minutes here and there but i’m perfectly happy with him having to fight for his time. Plus there is no way we get through 82 games with those three all being healthy.

    The entire idea that we NEED a pass first unselfish point guard is ridiculous.

    The spurs play within a defined system, manufacturing shots out of offensive sets. We do not all stand around and wait for Steve Nash to give us an open look.

    Tony works well for our needs. George shoots great provides D and will improve as he ages but he is what he is. Manu is the wild card. A SG who can just about do anything.

    Tony Manu and George is the best guard rotation we have had in forever why in the hell do we want to change it?

    Do we really really really want to go back to Jacques Vaughn style backup pg’s when George falls over?

  • bduran

    Bushka,

    Well said. Our guard rotation is great, one good, one very good, and one great guard.

  • Maverick1948

    Everyone thinks the Spurs are under the cap. We ain’t!!! When you combine the list of all the parts required to be there, we are well over the cap. When someone says we have 8 players for 52mil we are under the cap, they are wrong. Matt Bonner’s contract counts 200% against the cap even tho he is a FA. We hold his Bird rights. That is 6.5 mil. putting us over the cap. Now as for what I think the Spurs should try to pull off is the trade for CP3. Everyone seems to forget that Monty Williams is now the coach at New Orleans. He was a Spurs as a player under Pop and also an assistant coach under Pop. If CP3 is unhappy with New Orleans, then dont you think Monty Williams would push for a trade with the Spurs to get Parker? I know the Hornet have collison but he is a year away from being the leader of this team. Our main concern is signing Splitter. Then we can worry about the other parts of the off season.

  • rj

    BALLHOG

    good to see you again man. missed your posts.

    i am in agreement with jesse that george hill is not a point guard. this leads me to believe that we won’t have to choose between tony parker and george hill, considering they don’t really play the same position. what will be difficult is seeing how our starting rotations pan out. george hill started most of the season at the 2 guard position, but with the draft of james anderson and how we ended our season with manu starting, how will our guard rotation end up looking?

    jesse, do you think it is a good idea to bring back bonner? i completely agree that his skillset is rare, but with his lack of athleticism and teams easily neutralizing his threat in a seven game series, is he really worht being back? and if he isn’t going to play big minutes, won’t that hinder his shooting rythm? i’ve always been on the mahinmi bandwagon (though i have accepted he won’t return) and i am a bigger fan of finding a cheap athletic, defensive big who can body up with LA (mahinmi put gasol on his back last season…felt like that was what we were missing….beautiful) and leaving the stretch 4 shooting to mcdyess and duncan.

    raja bell sounds like a good acquisition.

  • http://48minutesofhell.com Jesse Blanchard

    I have no problem bringing back Bonner. He’s better than anyone we can find with the league minimum, so his bird rights are an asset in that regard.

    We’ve never really overpaid Bonner, just overused him. He needs to be in a situation where he’s not guarding the opposing team’s best offensive big man, so playing with a defensive liability like Blair is not doing him any favors. Maybe with a Splitter, Bonner can be moved to the more favorable matchup and not be such a liability on defense.

  • Jim Henderson

    “We’ve never really overpaid Bonner, just overused him. He needs to be in a situation where he’s not guarding the opposing team’s best offensive big man, so playing with a defensive liability like Blair is not doing him any favors.”

    Actually, Blair playing with the defensive liabilities of Bonner is not doing him any favors. We don’t need a stretch 4 to spread the floor to open up Blair’s inside game. That can be done just as well with a solid SF with some size (e.g., Dorell Wright). Blair needs to be paired with Duncan (TD at center), Splitter with McDyess. We don’t need Bonner. We need a shot-blocker in the paint. How do you think we won all our titles: we had guys that could block shots in the paint. We didn’t used to always have great shot-blockers, but that was when Duncan was swatting back 2.5-3.0 per game. He’s now down to 1.5, and it ain’t going to get any better at age 34.

  • http://www.nba.com fatsocalifornia

    Pop Mav has an eye to Raja Bell. We got to move fast. Let TD talk to RB (home Boy) and bring him to Spurs. 3 pointer and Good Defender too!

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