If you visited Project Spurs Monday, you saw a variety of free agency related articles that kicked off right after 11:00 PM CST as the ‘Spurs are interested in Monta Ellis’ report started the day.
From there, news came out about the Spurs being interested in Minnesota forward Andrei Kirilenko, Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat, Atlanta center Zaza Pachuila, and their own restricted free agent Manu Ginobili.
If you thought that was a lot of activity for one day, there’s more. Not only do the Spurs have interest in another point guard and a young center, but some of their current free agents names were also being thrown around the rumor mill Monday. Here’s a few more Spurs-related names from Monday.
Even though prior to free agency the Portland Trail Blazers were interested in restricted free agent Tiago Splitter, Chris Haynes of Comcast Sportsnet said the Blazers hadn’t yet contacted Splitter’s camp in the early stages of free agency.
Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports reported the Spurs were one of eight teams interested in Oden.
Oden, 25,has received interest from the Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs, Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies, league sources said.
From there, Jeff Goodman of ESPN said Oden will likely choose one of five teams, the Spurs ended up being named one of those five teams.
Greg Oden will likely choose from a group of suitors that includes the San Antonio Spurs, Miami Heat, Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics and Memphis Grizzlies, a source close to Oden told ESPN.com.
Since August 2012, the Spurs-Oden rumors have been swirling around for almost a year now.
ScoutingtheNBA.com told John Canzano, a Oregonian Sports columnist via Twitter that Gary Neal could be offered a deal from the Blazers.
This is one you might not put a lot of stock into because no other reports were mentioned through the day. If however the Blazers do make Neal an offer, the Spurs have already sent him a qualifying offer to make him a restricted free agent.
John Lucas III
Mark Deeks of Sham Sports reported that the Spurs were interested in John Lucas III.
“@MarkDeeksNBA: Another name on the backup point guard market, John Lucas III, has himself an unlikely but legitimate suitor in the Spurs.”— Paul Garcia PS (@PaulGarciaPS) July 1, 2013
Lucas is a 5’11” 30-year old guard coming off his 5th NBA season. Last year in 63 games with the Toronto Raptors, he averaged 5.3 points, shot 39% from the field, and 38% from 3-point range per Basketball-Reference.
Why the Spurs are interested in a 30-year old guard when they already have four point guards on their roster doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Monta Ellis (Update)
Later in the day, Steve Kyler of USA Today was asked via Twitter from a fan where the Spurs stood in the Ellis sweepstakes? By summing up his tweet, Kyler said the sides are still far apart but that the Spurs have interest and have the financial ability to make a move.
According to Jared Zwerling of ESPN New York, the Knicks are one team who won’t pursue Spurs free agent center DeJuan Blair because the team won’t be able to afford him.
A league source said Spurs big man DeJuan Blair will not be a candidate for the Knicks because of their limited financial flexibility.
Summing up the day
When you look at some of the positions the Spurs are looking for in free agency after the first day, one could infer they’re looking for another guard to help in the event Neal leaves, a backup small forward behind Kawhi Leonard, and a center in the event that Splitter doesn’t return.
If you’ve noticed, Twitter is a medium I use for releasing the fastest news possible. If you would like to follow me during free agency, follow @PaulGarciaPS.