After the San Antonio Spurs waived both Sam Young and Corey Maggette, who were auditioning for a backup small forward spot to Kawhi Leonard, the Spurs finally got their coveted swingman, albeit a few years, and injuries, later.
The Spurs signed the 6-7 small forward today in a very low-risk move that should allow the Spurs to get a look at Howard to see if he can fit that role, although not right away.
The Spurs and Howard have been tied together in several reports the past few offseasons, and he was nearly signed prior to the 2011-12 season before he chose to sign with the Utah Jazz.
One report in March of 2012 also mentioned a possible trade of Danny Green to the Jazz for Howard, and Tim Duncan reportedly wanted the Spurs to draft his fellow Demon Deacon. The Spurs ended up drafting Leandro Barbosa one pick before Howard was taken, and shipped him off to Phoenix.
In his time with the Dallas Mavericks, Howard gave the Spurs fits, and he was one of the NBA's best perimeter defenders. Now after several injuries and surgeries, Howard will provide the Spurs with a bit of an unknown quality. After tearing his ACL last season with the Minnesota Timberwolves, Howard could have a long road to recovery.
Just as the Spurs and others have used their D-League affiliates to send players on rehab stints, as the Spurs did with James Anderson, this could be the ideal situation for Howard to get back into shape and work his way back up to NBA competition.
For now though, the Spurs will likely start opening night with a rotation that involves Marco Belinelli and Manu Ginobili playing some backup small forward. Matt Bonner and Boris Diaw could also potentially spend some time at the three.
I really don't see this meaning much at all. So we get Howard who is coming off of his 2nd major knee surgery and hasn't had a good season in about 7 years since he was with Dallas. There are too many if's in the Josh Howard equation. If he gets healthy, stays healthy, learns the system, starts playing well. He has not shown any of these characteristics in years. I understand that he is cheap and the risk is minimal but we need to address a more important concern. The backup point guard.
I like Joseph in 2 years but Tim doesn't have 2 years. Mills is G. Neal light and Nando has lost his confidence. Make something happen RC so we don't have Manu and Marco run down by season's end running the point.
If Howard gets healthy and right, and fits in with the Spurs, this could be a HUGE deal for the playoff run. My biggest concern has been our backup point guard situation-both CoJo and Mills need Manu or Marco in the back court with them for the ball to move well in the offensive sets.
One of my concerns was the health of Manu down the stretch. Immediately that thins out what Marco can do and places a greater burden on him (backup 2 and 3 and keep offense rolling).
Howard could be a tremendous asset if he gets right, down the stretch and give Pop a lot of options on the perimeter, and Kawhi the rest he needs down the stretch to be as healthy as possible for playoffs.
If he Howard gets really healthy, the Spurs could play some very interesting stretches of small ball. There could also be an interesting unit Pop could use (again, if Howard gets healthy) in stretches: Manu/or Marco, Mills (just because he poses tremendous threat to light it up at any moment, Howard, Kawhi and TD.
All in all, a good, low risk, potentially high reward pickup.
Now about the backup point guard situation.....
It's the least Pop can do since Howard got Avery fired in Dallas.
And in the "all good things must come to an end" category. Now the Spurs can no longer claim that they are the only team to never have had a player that smoked weed.
WOW I THOUGHT MARCO WAS THE BACK UP OF KLEONARD......SO THIS SIGNING OF jHOWARD NOW.....MEANS MANU IS THE BACK UP OF TONY PARKER....TIM, AYERS, KL, DG, TP9.......TIAGO, DIAW, JH, MB, MG....WELL MY BE THEY STILL HAVE A CHANCE IN THE FINALS
Why don't they use Danny aka "money green" at small forward for some time, he was in the finals if I recall.
Josh Howard sucks not just at a basketball level, but at a human being level. His actions both on and off the court have been the anti-thesis of Spur-like behavior. His off-season regime of marijuana undoubtably contributed to his rapid decline from all-star play. He can shoot a jumpshot to save his life, is too slow to defend most SF's in the league, and too small to defend the post. As he said himself in reference to the national anthem: "I don't celebrate that s**t." Why doesn't he take his tremendous basketball talents somewhere else then? It would be a disgrace to see him wear the silver and black.
Stephen Jackson 2.0 .... meaning he'll play some awful minutes, get benched, wrongly think he's still as good as he was five years ago, whine about his role, and get cut.
There are a lot of mixed emotions about this signing for San Antonio but frankly I am happy with what he could bring to the Spurs. There is no question that the Spurs really like Howard as they have been trying their hardest of getting them, like Michael has stated in his article. I believe it was something San Antonio could not pass up, money wise. Surely it is less than what Maggette or Young would be asking for.
I too have been a fan of Howard, back when he was in Dallas. I hope he can play at the high level he once did and also more importantly stay healthy.
Good move. Spurs needed another SF. Hopefully, Howard can stay healthy and bring us a little bit of his back in the day Mavs self.
im shocked, the spurs must really feel that when howard gets healthy again hes that much better than corey maggette and sam young, i am still not convinced but the spurs must really like howard for them to even give him a unguaranteed contract being injured
@MarkCubanisaDouche I agree 100% on the Joseph and backup point situation. I would be fine with either of these guys if Tim, Manu and Parker were all 6-7 years younger. The window for TD is closing and he deserves much better. He deserves a vet in the eventuality of a Parker injury. Doesn't have to be an All-World vet. Someone along the lines of the way Avery was when he was here would be great. Just a guy who can drive the bus, keep the ball moving and offense flowing if TP goes down for a stretch. Joseph and Mills are just not there yet. Nando certainly isn't because he has lost his confidence as you said.
I think Howard is a great low risk guy who, if he gets right, could come in at just the right time to infuse some solid play and relieve Kawhi so he is fresh for the playoffs. I think Howard is one of those guys that is shaped by the culture he plays in and plays up to or down to what is expected. He could be a huge pickup if all the 'if's' play out well. If not...no harm. I do find it interesting the Spurs chose him and waived guys who were healthy, younger, or had just as much experience and were healthy, in training camp. They must see something/know something we don't.
I think the pg situation gets addressed. We are log-jammed with guys who would be perfect for a rebuilding team or a team that is a borderline team to make the playoffs but doesn't have the luxury we have-way too many guys who can play the 1. I think the Spurs will pull the trigger but they are probably watching that waiver wire for another need (vet big man who can play d and grab some boards). If they can get the vet pg off the waiver wire, maybe some salary cap casualty, or the vet big as a cap casualty, they can put together a nice package to meet the other need. We're in a position of strength I think to put something together.
But I am 100% with you on that pg situation. You don't give a Ferrari to a kid who has only been driving a couple of years.
@MarkCubanisaDouche The PG position is something to think about. But, the one thing we do have is options. SF is more of a concern because Leonard has battled knee problems here and there. We need another option of the bench. Diaw is good, but the Spurs tend to like playing him at PF. Notice SF was something we looked into filling before the playoffs last year; Tracy McGrady. Unfortunately McGrady didn't play much. But it showed we needed another guy in that spot especially in the Finals. Had McGrady did some things or had Stephen Jackson still been around we might have done a little better in the Finals.
@MarkCubanisaDouche I get your feelings about Howard, but since he was cut he really isn't a concern unless he proves he's worthy of being on the team. However, I think your statement of running Manu and Marco ragged has something to do with a backup SF though. Someone is going to have to give Kawhi a break and they seem like the most likely at this point (although Diaw is good in certain matchups). Not arguing that we don't need a more reliable backup PG, but just feel that a backup SF could help keep Manu and Marco (M&M?) fresh.
@JohnAbneyThis way they can send him to the Toros to monitor his progress.
NBA Camp Allocations: In accordance with the NBA, the NBA Development League will implement a rule change with regard to how D-League rosters are assembled. Beginning this season, up to three players cut from the roster of an NBA team before the D-League Draft will be allocated to that team’s D-League affiliate provided they sign the standard D-League contract.
@JohnAbney He's heading to the Austin Toros to get rehabbed. They needed to sign him first with the Spurs though in order to get him re-assigned there. I saw people had been talking about this before on Pounding the Rock. I don't know how it works, but yeah, that should answer your question.
@gruelingslate I thought Jason Kidd got Avery fired. Avery's rep is that his point guards hate him.
@gruelingslate I wonder if Howard would want to hang out?
@gruelingslate Josh Howard didn't get Avery Johnson fired in Dallas. Avery got fired because he wanted to trade Dirk for Kobe. Mark Cuban wasn't having that.
@gruelingslate Yeah... like Jackson never smoked weed....
@SCOLFIELD1421 Marco isn't a SF he's a SG.
@CraigThomas I like the fact you're bringing up something that is really really old. Like a person can't change. You say it would be a disgrace, but the Spurs have been wanting him to wear their jersey for the past 10 years. What is Spur-like behavior, anyway? Need not to forget Stephen Jackson. When Stephen Jackson came back do you remember how fired up the Spurs were? Pop doesn't mind guys like Jackson or Howard. Those guys are capable of helping you win games. And we all know the Spurs like winning games. I'd rather have Josh Howard than Jason Collins. Instead of thinking negatively, go look at Josh Howard basketball clips on YouTube and think about the possibility of what this guy could bring to this team. Here's one to get you started: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkEszFsvOjM
@BurkhartBrandon Stephen Jackson helped us win a championship, remember? So, if comparing Howard to Jackson, why think so negatively? Hopefully, Howard can do the same for us. He almost brought a championship to Dallas had it not been for a rigged Finals.
@merkin Hey, at least Manu isn't our brittlest-boned veteran anymore!
@zerospurs i dont know that it had anything to do with "better" so much as bang for the buck. howards contract is likely smaller than the other guys and if he can give them 10-15 decent minutes then hes a plus, if he cant then hes gone no harm no foul. his upside over those guys is his defense, IF healthy he is leaps and bounds better on defense than either of those guys.
My fellow spur fan you have created the single most bestest nickname, Marco & Manu/ M&M, since KimYe. That is all.
@DifferentVSTheSame @CraigThomas Past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior. Many Spurs fans like myself gave Jackson a pass b/c Timmy D vouched for him. Unfortunately, the Spurs organization didn't rub off on Jackson who continued his selfish ways in SA which forced him out the door. We should have seen it coming, but again, we were too focused on SJax's past performances circa 2003 to realize the guy's game had degraded immensely since then and his attitude hadn't changed.
And why bring up Jason Collins? Was he even on our radar? You know the egregious rumors going around about Timmy which I will not mention here. But, if they prove to be true, will that tarnish your image of the man who built the Spurs?
Josh Howard is the definition of a thug who has no loyalty to this his game, his body, or his country. The previous statements/conduct Howard has done should disqualify him from wearing the Silver and Black just like SJax's should have. Hindsight is 20/20, but it's not too hard to see how this will end up.
@gymbear @DifferentVSTheSame @SCOLFIELD1421 He's a combo-guard. If you look at the teams who had him you would know he's not someone you leave at the 3 a lot. It depends on match-ups. He can play 1 because of his handles and passing, but his style of play is a SG. He's like Ginobili and Brent Barry. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JBswGMEI4p8
@CraigThomas @CraigThomas@DifferentVSTheSame All I'm really trying to say is, what's wrong with giving the guy a chance? What he did along time ago is what it is. In my opinion if the Spurs roll with him I look at the possibility of what he could do for us. During his time with the Mavs he did some good things. Injuries have hurt him during his career, but the guy can still ball. We need a SF that can give Kawhi some rest and produce off the bench. Josh Howard has proven in the past he can create his own shots, defend and contribute in other ways on the court. One thing to remember, we got Pop. Pop don't play around, even with the guys he likes most. For the record Pop liked Stephen Jackson, a lot. When the time came Pop dealt with him and went about his business. I'm sure he'll do the same with Josh Howard if need be.
@CraigThomas @DifferentVSTheSame Like I said bringing up something that's really really old. I saw this on TV and the internet when it happened. What does that have to do with him today? Can a person not make mistakes and learn from them? Mind you everybody ain't down for the U.S. Flag. When mentioning Jason Collins I'm talking about his contribution on the court. He was better in college and his first couple of years in New Jersey. He hasn't done much of anything in years but be on a magazine announcing he's homosexual. I'd rather have a guy who can do more on the court, just saying. Tim Duncan has kids and in divorces anybody can say crap. His teammates don't believe it. And if it's true at least he did something during his time in the league. Tim Duncan didn't build the Spurs he contributed. It was other guys who also helped this team become successful, not just one man. You're judging Josh Howard and acting like you have done no wrong in life. You aren't perfect, I'm not perfect and neither is Josh Howard. I find it funny you describe the Spurs organization to be one way and they go out their way to seek and sign a "Thug." LOL So, much for knowing your team.