2019-20 NBA Team Preview Series: San Antonio Spurs
The 2019-20 NBA season starts October 22nd and to get you ready for tip-off, Off the Glass is previewing all 30 teams. Today we look at the San Antonio Spurs.
2018-2019 Record: 48-34, 2nd place in the Southwest Division, Lost 3-4 to the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.
Season Recap: Last season was not a great one by San Antonio’s lofty standards. The year started off with the loss of Dejounte Murray in the preseason due to an ACL tear. Despite the loss of someone that was to be a major contributor, the Spurs found a way to win and were able to incorporate newly acquired DeMar DeRozan into their team without a lot of trouble. They rolled out the 7th best offense in the league according to Offensive Rating and gave the Nuggets all that they could handle in the first round of the playoffs.
Key Losses: Dante Cunningham, F; Donatas Montejunas, F/C; Quincy Pondexter, F; Davis Bertans, F
Key Additions: DeMarre Carroll, F; Trey Lyles, F
Preview: The Spurs are returning the vast majority of their roster from last season. DeMar DeRozan and LaMarcus Aldridge will be expected to carry the offense, while the Spurs will rely on their potentially dominant defensive backcourt of Derrick White and Dejounte Murray to carry their defense. The Spurs have high hopes for their young backcourt of White, Murray, and also Bryn Forbes and Lonnie Walker. That mixture of youth to go along with DeRozan and Aldridge guarantee that the Spurs will be a tough out each and every night during the course of the regular season. The Spurs style of play should remain unchanged. They hunt for good looks, which explains why last season they shot the least amount of three pointers, but finished with the highest percentage of made threes. If San Antonio can continue that type of offensive efficiency, they have the personnel to be a top 10 defense in the NBA. If they are able to do that, it is hard to see San Antonio being outside of the playoff picture in the West.
Player to Watch: Dejounte Murray, G
Team X-Factor: Three point shooting, can they duplicate their efficiency?
Worst Case Scenario: The Spurs choice to keep their roster intact while the rest of the West made big improvements leads to them missing the playoffs for the first time since 1997.
Best Case Scenario: The young backcourt takes a leap and allows the Spurs to become the team with no stars that is able to crash the top four of the West and make noise in the playoffs.
Actual 2019-2020 Prediction: 43-39, 3rd place in the Southwest Division