This past summer the San Antonio Spurs got European happy in the second round of the NBA Draft (what else is new). They received Davis Bertans and Erazem Lorbek in the Kawhi Leonard trade and then drafted Hungarian Adam Hanga towards the end of the draft. At 29, Lorbek is the most polished, NBA ready prospect and apparently the Spurs would like to bring him over next season.
We’ll look at Bertans in a minute, but Adam Hanga continues to improve for his Spanish team, Assignia Manressa. Yesterday, Hanga returned home to Budapest and scored 11 points, pulled down three boards and had five assists in just 18 minutes of play. For the season, Hanga is averaging seven points, 2.6 assists and three rebounds a game in just under 22 minutes per game.
Those numbers don’t jump out at you, but it’s important to remember that Hanga’s game is more about attacking the rim (he’s shooting 19 percent from three), which doesn’t jive with a lot of European teams. Given the Spurs depth at two guard, Hanga could use another year in Europe or maybe in Austin. But in two years a guy named Manu Ginobili may decide to hang it up, and then someone like Hanga could help fill the massive whole Manu will leave behind.
We covered Ryan Richards a couple weeks ago, but let’s look at the other two big Spurs’ prospects.
As I noted earlier, Erazem Lorbek is more than NBA ready. He’s one of the best big men in Europe, averaging 14 points and five rebounds in just 24 minutes of play. He’s also shooting 63 percent from the field and 44 percent from three. Lorbek recently said he’s undecided about his plans for next season, but his contract is up.
Bertans is the youngest Spurs prospect and by far the biggest project. Barely 20 years old, Bertans is playing just 15 minutes a game for Union Olimpija and averaging three points a game. It’s important to remember Bertans moved up to a higher division of play this season. The best comparison would be that he’s moved from a major college conference like the ACC or Big East to the NBA. It’s all about adjustments and at 20 Bertans isn’t there yet. Stay tuned for his progress, Spurs fans.
And stay tuned for more news on Lorbek’s status on next season.