The San Antonio Spurs have built a reputation for finding what many people affectionately refer to as “diamonds in the rough.” Early in his career, before he was a key rotation piece and setting an NBA Finals record, Danny Green was waived from a couple of teams, including the Spurs. Aron Baynes and Boban Marjanovic, who both started as fairly unknown names to many NBA fans, received well-paying contracts after showcasing their talent with the Spurs. Boris Diaw rehabilitated his NBA career in San Antonio, becoming an important piece of a championship winning squad. Jonathon Simmons joined the Spurs’ D-League affiliate through their annual local tryouts and after two seasons, signed a deal with the Spurs. He currently looks primed to break out as the newest Spurs fan-favorite. Bryn Forbes is hoping to become the next name on this list.
Forbes was a four-year college athlete who, despite multiple pre-draft workouts with several different NBA teams, went undrafted. It’s worth noting that the Spurs did not have a second round pick in last year’s draft after trading it to the Sacramento Kings the summer before for Ray McCallum, but that didn’t stop the Spurs from finding alternative avenues to recruit new talent. The Spurs invited Forbes to play on their Summer League squad in both Utah and Las Vegas, where he caught the eye of the front office. The Spurs signed Forbes to a non-guaranteed deal after seven Summer League games. His impressive run did not end at the Summer League, however. Forbes continued to impress throughout the preseason, landing him a spot on the 15-man regular season roster.
As Forbes’ journey to become the next contributor in the Spurs’ deep rotation begins, it seems appropriate to examine where Forbes fits into the Spurs’ roster and what he specifically can contribute. It’s no secret that the Spurs are placing a heavier emphasis on outside shooting this season. Patty Mills and Green are both looking to have bounce back seasons after shooting slumps last year, and the Spurs brought over Latvian sharpshooter Davis Bertans, and LaMarcus Aldridge has continued to develop his three-point shot and has discussed using it more this season. Forbes only further contributes to this endeavor. Although an incredibly small sample size, and often against end-of-the-rotation talent, Forbes shot a scorching 58.8% from 3-point range in the preseason, according to the NBA’s stats page. Forbes has NBA range and is a potent catch-and-shoot player. Per Sports Reference, he shot 48.1% from 3’s on 288 attempts during his senior season, the second highest percentage in the NCAA last year.
There have been talks of the Spurs experimenting with Kyle Anderson at point guard for stretches this season. Pairing Anderson and Forbes in the backcourt could prove to be a clever way to cover both players’ weaknesses. Anderson’s size means that he could guard longer shooting guards if needed. Playing Forbes with Anderson would also mean that the Spurs would not have to sacrifice shooting while playing Anderson at the point, a skill he is still in the process of developing. Forbes fits well with Dejounte Murray for practically the same reasons. Certainly, there will be games throughout the season when Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich decides to rest one or both of Ginobili and Tony Parker, which is when the Spurs would probably experiment with these kinds of lineups. Forbes will probably be a candidate for a couple of D-League stints as well, which will only help develop him into the player he will need to be, to gain consistent minutes with the Spurs. While he may not get much playing time during parts of the season, through the patience and hard work that got him this far, Forbes may end up being another name on the long list of players the Spurs took a chance on who ended up being important contributors for them down the road.