Spurs Rumors: Popovich, Roster, Aldridge, DeRozan

As rumors continue to swirl about the possibility that the Nets will make a run at longtime San Antonio head coach Gregg Popovich, Spurs CEO R.C. Buford said that his team is operating under the assumption that Popovich will be returning for the 2020/21 season, writes Jabari Young of CNBC.com.

“I don’t know if he’s told (Spurs general manager) Brian (Wright) any differently,” Buford said. “Pop’s shown nothing other than how we’re going to build our team for next year.”

Popovich is easily the NBA’s current longest-tenured head coach and seems likely to return to the Spurs for at least one more year. However, he’s also the league’s oldest coach at age 71, so the club can’t count on him to remain in his current role indefinitely. Still, Buford is confident that Popovich’s influence will linger even after he eventually leaves the franchise.

“Pop’s vision will be in play long after his presence,” Buford said, per Young. “That doesn’t mean it’ll be him in there making those decisions, but we’ve all learned together, and you’re not going to step away from a values-based, team-building aspect that focuses on culture and coming to work every day and working on it.”

Here’s more from Young on the Spurs:

  • Asked about the Spurs’ roster direction, Wright expressed that he likes the team’s mix of veterans and younger players, while Buford said San Antonio will continue to address its roster “optimistically and opportunistically,” according to Young. “I think having the ability to develop young talent and flexibility to be opportunistic is going to be what we’re going to continue to do,” Buford said.
  • According to Young, the Spurs were rumored to be shopping LaMarcus Aldridge near this season’s trade deadline, but rival executives believe the club’s asking price was too high. “(The Spurs) overplayed their hand thinking they were supposed to get some giant package for him,” one NBA executive told CNBC.
  • Within Young’s article on the Spurs, he observes that DeMar DeRozan will likely decide to pick up his 2020/21 player option. While that sounds more like informed speculation than a firm report, it’s still worth noting, since Young suggested during the winter that DeRozan may be unhappy in San Antonio and another report around the same time indicated he’d likely opt out if he’s not extended. That was before the coronavirus pandemic changed the NBA landscape, however.
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15 thoughts on “Spurs Rumors: Popovich, Roster, Aldridge, DeRozan

    • mcmillankmm

      Probably all 3 at the trade deadline or during the season…makes sense for the Spurs to give it a go, but with Aldridge DeRozen Mills and Gay all free agents after the 2020-2021 season, you can sell at the deadline if it’s not looking promising

      • Otogar

        In the best scenario, DeRozan would opt out and the Spurs could start rebuilding. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem likely. The Spurs cannot do anything meaningful with the current roster, so it will be at least another year in the wilderness.

  1. The Howler

    All 4 are 30+ yrs so SAS needs to temper expectations or time it so they fill a need for contender or proto-contender. The first they are in control of but the latter is not guaranteed. LMA is old, Derozan is a shorter, older version of Ben Simmons, Mills and Gay are role players. They may have to take on some crappy contracts to successfully trade. I don’t see Pop doing that. He should try and take a talented, underachieving team to the next level.

    • Otogar

      Ben Simmons cannot shoot from 5 feet and DDR has one of the best mid-range jumpers in the NBA. DeRozan’s style is not very effective in modern game, but he is in no way comparable to Simmons (who, in turn, is way better in other aspects, such as dimes or defense).

      • Nigel Mckenzie

        I think he just means that DeMar and Ben have the same sort of vibes on the court if that makes sense haha

      • The Howler

        Correct, different styles of play. I would add that Derozan was less efficient than Simmons on 2 point shots this year.

  2. Sillivan

    Let’s say you put 3 players in one team:Ben Simmons, DeRozan and Drummond

    They would be the worst team in the west

    • The Human Rain Delay

      Oddly, sans popovich, the Spurs do have the worst roster in the West imo narrowly beneath Sac –

  3. KnickerbockerAl

    It’s time to rebuild in SA. Blazers would take Aldridge now. Butler and DeRozan are buds. He fits in Miami. Makes both teams much better. Teams that are ready to win now. The Spurs can get young players, picks. And just rebuild.

  4. Simmons>Russ

    I wonder how good Aldridge would fit in Miami.

    Swap Iggy, Solomon Hills expiring deal and 2 future seconds for Aldridge.
    Really just expiring deals plus two crummy picks but that’s better than just letting his contract wins down.

    Miami with Dragic Herro Nunn Robinson Butler Crowder Aldridge Adebayo Olynyk thats a really solid roster. Great 9 man rotation with versatility, size, experience, shooting, defence and a good coach.

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