The Spurs timeline to contend is far at this moment. They need to add more firepower to their current roster. These guys had the potential to be great in the league but still going and raw. In eight games in the bubble, they proved that they’re ready to have more responsibility. From Derrick White to Keldon Johnson, they played well as a group. The front office must build or add proven talent that can push them into success. The Spurs is a piece away to be more competitive.
As Derrick White is the oldest among these young squad at 26, they must need to compete sooner than trying to develop another young prospect and likely put to G League. Spurs should try to look elsewhere to trade their pick for a young player who can contribute right away. A proven guy that still got long term value for the Spurs but not fits in his current situation. These guys have been disgruntled in their current team or not fit to be with them long term.
One of the guys we referred to is Lauri Markkanen of the Chicago Bulls who’s rumored wants to be out of Windy City. The third-year forward has been scoring in double figures but last season was his worst production. It was reported that if the Chicago Bulls can upgrade at the number four pick, they will move on with Lauri Markkanen. San Antonio can trade Rudy Gay and their 11th pick to the Bulls. With the right organization, this young guy from Finland can be more mature. In his second season, Markkanen scored 19 points and grabbed 9 rebounds with a 36% shooting. He could be a good fit for the Spurs slashers who always attacked the lane to attract a double team that could lead into wide open guys like Lauri Markkanen. If he commits himself to be a good player, he could be great in this league. At the age of 23, he needs a year to work for his game to be more complete. Lauri Markkanen needs to adapt to the physicality of the league. In San Antonio, he will love everything like the culture, the history, the people who work for the Spurs, and of course Spurs fans. This city is more than basketball that Markkanen likely to consider as home. With a coach that treated you like family, Lauri Markkanen had all motivations to keep grinding.
The other one Spurs should try to get is Kelly Oubre who will be an unrestricted free agent after 2021. The Spurs should make the Suns believe that Oubre isn’t staying at them when his contract was done. The Spurs trading their pick to the Suns could entice the Phoenix to invest than paying Kelly Oubre Jr in the summer of 2021. Although a little risky, the Spurs will have bird rights with Kelly Oubre Jr once get traded. With a lot of cap space in the summer of 2021, the Spurs can retain Oubre. He’s a great defender who can impact both ends of the court. A guy like him needs a team that can give him a bright future not only financially but the winning culture.
Among these two was mentioned above, Lauri Markkanen was a good project on a long term basis. The younger one and cheaper to retain plus the upside to a great kid someday.