The San Antonio Spurs are in the midst of their most impressive stretch of the season, winning eight of their last ten including going 3-0 in their first back-to-back-to-back of the season. They won those three games with one of the big three sitting out. They've also added three new players to their roster in the last two eeks. With the moves the Spurs made in the last two weeks, it's obvious they're making their most serious run at the NBA title in the last few years. However, that doesn't mean they aren't thinking about the future.
Adam Zagoria with Zagsblogs.com writes the Spurs, among other teams, have been making calls to Wilson Arroyo, the AAU coach for Syracuse guard Dion Waiters.
“The San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder and the Utah Jazz have been calling me, and a couple of background-checking people have called,” Arroyo told SNY.tv Friday by phone. “They do background checks for the NBA.”
Here's the low down on Waiters. He's a 6'4" shooting guard who can guard either position and likes handling the ball. Here's of excerpt of DraftExpress.com's Joe Treutlein's latest breakdown of Waiters.
"A physically gifted player with an excellent frame and terrific instincts, Waiters' aggressive defense definitely fuels this area of his game by creating opportunities, but he does a very good job keeping his head up and attacking when his team has a numbers advantage. He's very crafty with the ball in his hands and does a good job of using his shiftiness going to the basket, switching the ball between hands and showing a very good feel for weaving through defenses. While not exceptionally quick or fast, Waiters has perhaps helped himself most here by showing a good commitment to using his well-built frame to go hard to the basket, frequently finishing with power and playing with a real mean streak on the break."
So yes, the Spurs are looking at another guard, but let's not get carried away.
Waiters is one of probably two to three dozen guys that get scouted and calls are made about leading up to draft. The thing that is special about Waiters is he was probably Syracuse's best player last season and he didn't even start. Head coach Jim Boeheim used Waiters to spark his second unit on both sides of the ball. Think of him as a Tyreke Evans-lite type player (though I think he's less selfish than Evans). This shows a couple of things.
First, despite having traded out of the first round of this year's draft, the Spurs are looking at first round talent. Second, despite looking like they're super deep at the guard spot, the Spurs are clearly open to improving any part of their roster. And althought Waiters is set to enter the NBA Draft early, the draft isn't until late June, so I'm sure we'll many more names popping up as we get closer.
Tyreke was much much much more talented, a prolific scorer and elite athlete. I think we have a few assets we can trade to move up in the draft, not sure if the players we'll pick are going to be better than JA or Green or whoever we're going to trade to move up in the draft.
Come draft time, the spurs will be choosing someone who can play power forawrd or center. Its about time. TD is NOT getting any younger. Besides, the spurs have plenty of small forwards and shooting guards.
Waiters is a unselfish version of Tyreke Evans. He's a great teammate, plays hard defense, and really cares about winning. Very athletic and strong too. He could be the successor to Manu he has that much talent.