A look ahead to the offseason rebuild for the San Antonio Spurs

The 2019/20 NBA season has not turned out quite as expected for Spurs fans. The reality is that the side are not going to add to their 22 consecutive playoff appearances this season. They sit way down in the Western Conference, and this has left fans realizing that the time has come for a total rebuild of the side. If they get this right, then PA sports betting sites and other online sportsbooks in the US could be giving decent odds for a better showing next time around.

What areas should the Spurs focus on when rebuilding during the coming offseason? 

Focus on youth and stability?

One thing that you could expect with a certain degree of probability is that any offseason rebuild might not be overly dramatic. For the last few years, the Spurs have been focused on the development of players who are already in the locker room. Although this season has been disappointing for the side, it seems unlikely that Coach Gregg Popovich will bring in lots of high-profile, expensive new players to make next year better. This could mean that the rebuilding job in the offseason sees only a few new faces arrive, with a lot of effort being put into developing the younger players. Guys such as Keldon Johnson, Derrick White and Dejounte Murray should be even better next season, and the team may be modeled around them during the offseason. 

Make the most of the draft

Losing is never fun for Spurs fans, but there could be one positive to come out of this. Finishing lower down the conference will see them get a higher draft pick when the time comes. This will naturally give them a better chance of bagging one of the top college players they are interested in to improve their roster. Of course, the key is to make the most of this and get in the right players. With the likes of Daniel Oturu and Jaden McDaniels up for grabs, the 2020 draft could be pivotal for any rebuilding job. If they also make a few shrewd acquisitions for more experienced players to blend with this youth, it could see them in good shape to get back on track next season.

Less game time for older pros

If the Spurs do invest heavily in rebuilding through youth, the only issue to be sorted out is exactly how to keep experienced pros such as LaMarcus Aldridge happy. Some Spurs fans felt that the senior players were given too much playing time this season and this actually hampered the progress of any young talent. A key decision in the offseason for Coach Popovich will be to work out how much time he will give the more senior players, how he will keep them happy, and how to still give the younger players the time they need on court to develop.  

Defense needs to be sorted out 

Whatever happens in terms of recruitment in the coming months, a big part of the rebuild will lie in sorting out the underperforming defense from this current campaign. In previous years, the Spurs’ defense has been highly regarded throughout the NBA as mistakes tended to be few and far between and they were usually able to stand firm under pressure late in games. To say that this has not been true in 2019/20 is a real understatement! The team have lost double-digit leads and buckled late in many games – all due to defensive woes. 

Much of this has been down to bringing on smaller players late in games to match up with what their opponents are doing. The issue though is that the Spurs’ smaller players are usually the worst defenders! Coach Popovich must look at bringing in some new faces to help here and also tweak his own tactics to stop opponents constantly gaining beneficial matchups on court when attacking.

The offseason will be a testing time

There is no doubt that this coming offseason will be the most testing one that the Spurs management have had for a long time. Performing so badly is not a familiar feeling for the Spurs, and this alone will provoke some thorough analysis of what needs to change. As noted above, it may see the team focus more on developing the core of fine young talent they have and bringing in a few new faces to help beef up their defense. Of course, it is also likely that a sprinkling of experience from more senior players will be used to help get the team back on track in 2020/21.