The Spurs have their first two deals of NBA free agency. San Antonio is expected to sign 6-foot-7 forward Doug McDermott to a 3-year, $42M deal. Shams Charania of The Athletic reported the deal first and it has since been confirmed by KSAT-12 Sports.
McDermott is entering 8th season in NBA after averaging 13.6 ppg and shooting nearly 39% from 3-point range last season with Pacers.
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San Antonio has also agreed to a 3-year deal worth $22M with Portland 6-foot-11 power forward Zach Collins. The deal was reported first by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and confirmed by KSAT-12 Sports.
Collins played in only 11 games last year for Portland after injuring his foot. He averaged 7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game and is only 23 years old. He also has outside range, shooting nearly 37 percent from 3-point range before getting injured.
As of 7 p.m. Monday, San Antonio was rumored to still be in the mix for a variety of players including Lauri Markkanen and Kelly Oubre. There has been no reported deal for DeMar DeRozan while Patty Mills has garnered interest from several other teams.
PREVIEW STORY BELOW:
For the first time in years, the San Antonio Spurs are flush with cash as NBA free agency officially begins Monday afternoon. And I write “officially” because by the time you read this, ten transactions may have occurred based on the way NBA news is leaked these days.
San Antonio is expected to have about $49 million in cap space.
The first looming question is what happens with DeMar DeRozan? At this point, it’s safe to say both sides have been exploring options.
A potential Spurs-Lakers deal centered around DeRozan and Kyle Kuzma was upended on draft night when LA reportedly agreed to a deal for Russell Westbrook.
Yahoo! Sports reported the day after that DeRozan had conversations with LeBron James about possibly going to Los Angeles. As I’ve previously written, this is probably the best time for DeMar to part ways with San Antonio.
He’s been solid for the Spurs and a respected veteran, but at this stage in his career, he needs to play on a contender. The Spurs are not that right now. The fact the Spurs were even engaged in talks with the Lakers of all teams underscores how much they respect DeRozan.
DeRozan and the Spurs can still reach an agreement of course, but it would significantly eat into San Antonio’s cap space, an estimated $28-30 million a year.
What about the team’s other free agents? I am going to take an educated guess that Rudy Gay and Trey Lyles are most likely leaving San Antonio. I’m leaning toward San Antonio bringing back Patty Mills, but there is reported interest from Boston in signing Patty. Makes sense with the Ime Udoka connection.
Let’s take a look at who San Antonio has been linked to in free agency outside the current roster. For weeks, it appeared San Antonio would be in the mix to sign Hawks forward John Collins, but recent reports indicate he is leaning toward staying with Atlanta. I would imagine San Antonio still sends him a max offer sheet. Collins is a restricted free agent, meaning the Hawks have 48 hours to match. He is expected to land a lucrative deal around $28 million per season.
Other options at forward include Chicago’s Lauri Markkanen and Golden State’s Kelly Oubre Jr. Markkanen is restricted and likely to get a deal around $15-18 million per season. Oubre is unrestricted, but looking at a deal around $22 million per season.
Oubre would be an interesting addition. He’s a versatile forward who hasn’t seemingly reached his full potential. The Spurs need outside shooting and depth on the frontcourt and Markkanen seems to fit both those needs, but how much is San Antonio willing to overpay him to snag him from the Bulls.
Speaking of frontcourt help, a few other names to watch are Sacramento’s Richaun Holmes and Portland’s Zach Collins. Holmes is seeking a big deal in the range of $20 million per season. Collins is a less expensive option and coming off a foot injury.
It’s a important free agency period for San Antonio. It all gets started on Monday afternoon.