A max deal is waiting for Kawhi Leonard, but Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili hold the keys to the Spurs‘ summer, Chuck Myron of Hoops Rumors wrote last week. If they retire, the Spurs will have the capacity to sign an elite free agent without moving anyone. If they stay, it may displace other key members of the team. While we wait to see how this pivotal offseason plays out for the Spurs, here’s a glance at the rest of the Southwest Division..
- The Pelicans have a lot of big decisions to make this summer, but nothing will carry more weight than trying to get Anthony Davis to sign a five-year extension, John Reid of The Times-Picayune writes. New Orleans is preparing a max money five-year offer and that’s no surprise given the year that he had. Davis ended the regular season with an eye-popping 30.8 PER, the eleventh highest for a single season in league history.
- The Grizzlies‘ trade of Pau Gasol to the Lakers in the deal that fetched them Marc Gasol was controversial at the time, but GM Chris Wallace felt that it was the right move, Ken Berger of CBSSports.com writes. “Our crowds were minuscule, and in our own market we were second but might as well have been 100th,” Wallace said. “We were nowhere near the Memphis Tigers in terms of capturing the imagination of the city. Pau’s candle had been doused; he wasn’t performing well and we weren’t performing well as a team.” Of course, that deal brought Pau’s brother, Marc Gasol, to Memphis.
- Gasol could be a franchise changer for the right team, Lang Greene of Basketball Insiders writes. Memphis officials have maintained that bringing Gasol back is their top priority this summer and all signs point to him staying put with the Grizzlies. However, he’s still expected to explore his options.