Full 2022 NBA Offseason Ratings for San Antonio

The San Antonio Spurs finally pulled the trigger on a major rebuild, and it all started in the 2022 NBA offseason.

The main ingredient in this Alamo rebuilding recipe was none other than former San Antonio Spurs All-Star Dejounte Murray. He was traded, along with big man Jock Landale, to the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for Danilo Gallinari and several future first-round picks. Gallinari was eventually dropped by Spurs.

They also lost Lonnie Walker IV, who averaged a career-high 12.1 points and 23 minutes per game last season, to the Lakers during free agency.

In this year’s NBA draft, the Spurs had three first-round picks. With the ninth pick overall, they chose Baylor’s 19-year-old Polish PF, Jeremy Sochan. He averaged 9.2 points and 6.4 rebounds per for the Bears last season.

It’s clear that Spurs are now rebuilding for the future. It was a long time coming, but Spurs finally managed to commit to it fully. As such, San Antonio’s depth chart looks depleted. It now features striker Keldon Johnson and Jakob Poetl as their best players, highlighting how thin their roster is in 2022.

Coach Gregg Popovich, however, hopes it will be worth it.

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Full 2022 NBA Offseason Ratings for Spurs

Draft: B+

On draft night, multiple teams approached the San Antonio Spurs to trade their No. 20 and No. 25 picks at the end of the first round. Spurs, however, didn’t like any of the offers they received. As a result, they ended up with three 19-year-olds.

Nimble two-way wing Jeremy Sochan was their No. 9 pick. He has the potential to become a serious wing-scoring threat and someone who can push the ball in transition. Experts also consider Sochan among the best defensemen in this draft class. Know that Spurs have a history of successfully converting defenders into versatile threats. Kawhi Leonard is perhaps the best example with Bruce Bowen. They will now attempt to accomplish it with Sochan, a nimble 6’9 player who can guard almost anyone.

Two athletic guards and perimeter players, Malaki Branham and Blake Wesley, give Spurs’ youthful core even more depth. Although Wesley can play without the ball, he often acts as a facilitator with the ball in his hands while Branham plays more without the ball than with the rock in his hands.

Despite the fact that none of San Antonio’s three selections are known, they should provide value whenever they’re on the floor. Spurs understand that while they are still a few years away from becoming exceptional, the picks they made in this year’s draft could all turn out to be impact players.

Professions: B

This transaction may seem confusing in many ways.

Observers saw Dejounte Murray as a rock-solid element for Spurs’ future, but they swapped him for a 33-year-old striker they eventually waived. Conventional wisdom holds that Spurs could have acquired young talent that they could develop into a strong supporting cast around Murray.

In trading him, however, Spurs chose a more seismic route.

Now, they have three future draft selections that are expected to be between their late teens and mid-twenties. Combine that with how Spurs will likely have one of the worst records of the coming season, and they have a good chance of landing the lottery in 2023. That means they could possibly draft the French unicorn of 7 ‘3 Victor Wembanyama. Other big name hopes for 2023 are Team Ignite’s Scoot Henderson or Villanova’s Cam Whitmore.

Free Agency: C+

The biggest keep here is none other than Keldon Johnson, who signed a four-year, $80 million contract.

The 22-year-old improved his performance last season. He appeared in 75 games and averaged 17.0 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. Johnson also shot 39.8% from outside the arc. He joined Kawhi Leonard as the only players in team history to record 1,000 or more points, 400 or more rebounds, and 125 or more three-pointers in a single season. Will Johnson be the next Kawhi? It’s unlikely, but he should be the team’s best offensive option in the 2022-23 season.

Isaiah Roby and Gorgui Dieng could be strong frontline replacements for Poetl, but neither should be a game changer. Spurs also signed undrafted free agents Dominick Barlow and Jordan Hall to two-way contracts. They are also unlikely to splash.

Overall: B

The Murray deal netted Spurs a huge booty, finally allowing them to ‘execute’ a full rebuild. Additionally, they picked up defensive ace Sochan and potential impact players Branham and Wesley in the draft.

San Antonio also has the cap space to acquire more assets in the future. Fans expect them to be among the worst teams in the league this coming season. That’s realistic, but the flip side is that after holding out for a long time, it looks like ownership, management, and Gregg Popovich are finally on board with a major tank and rebuild approach.