The Southwest Division in the Western Conference of the National Basketball Association consists of five teams. Along with the San Antonio Spurs, it also includes the Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Pelicans and the Houston Rockets. The Spurs plays their home games in the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.
This team is one of the four teams that used to play for the ABA (American Basketball Association) that remained intact when the NBA and ABA merged in 1976. What’s more, they are the only team from those four that have managed to win the NBA Championship title. In fact, they have managed this feat more than once – having won Championships titles in 1999, 2003, 2005 2007 and 2015. In addition to this, up until the 2019-202 season, the San Antonio Spurs was the team with the highest winning percentage out of all of the active NBA teams. Moreover, up until May 2017, they also had the highest winning percentage of any team in the major pro sports leagues in both the United States and Canada over the past thirty years. Pretty impressive stats by anyone’s standards.
Overall, between 1999 until the 2016-17 season, the Spurs team won 50 games every season and managed a record of 18 consecutive years of 50 regular-season wins. They topped this odd in the 2018-19 season by matching the current record of 22 consecutive playoff appearances.
This success is no fluke. The draft pick and acquisition choices of Head Coach Gregg Popovich alongside the impressive careers of Spurs legends David Robinson and Tim Duncan have played a huge role.
The Head Coach of the San Antonio Spurs, Greg Popovich is beloved by players and fans. However, Popovich (known affectionately as ‘Pop’) actually graduated from the Air Force Academy. During his senior year there, he was the basketball team captain and their top scorer… but he almost ended up becoming a spy! However, he took over the Head Coach position of the Spurs back in 1996 and he is now the longest-serving active coach not just in the NBA but in any major league US sport.
2021 San Antonio Spurs Draft Picks
So, with the 2021 NBA draft lottery, the San Antonio Spurs selected Josh Primo from Alabama with their 12th overall pick in the first round and Joe Wieskampin the second-round with their 41st pick from Iowa.
This was a very important draft for the team because despite boasting so much historical franchise success, last season they only managed a 10th place finish and an uncharacteristically early exit from the play-in tournament after being defeated by the Memphis Grizzlies. For the fourth season in a row, they weren’t contenders for the title – and it was the second season in a row that they never got into the playoffs. Even in the previous two seasons they just about scraped in and got eliminated in the first rounds. With four seasons in a row where they have visibly struggled to have any impact in the league, they were desperate to find answers with this year’s draft – they will certainly not want to miss out on the playoffs for a third season!
In truth, the team has been in trouble since the departure of Kewhi Leonard at the end of the 2018 season as they haven’t managed to find another player to take the place of the team cornerstone to build the squad around. They came close with DeMar DeRozan, who was the top scorer for the team with an average points per game of 21.6 after 61 games. However, he enters the offseason as an unrestricted free agent along with other squad members such as Patty Mills and Rudy Gay. This means they will have some serious decisions as to who they will be bringing back for the upcoming season. So, unsurprisingly, fans of the team were expecting a lot from the NBA 2021 draft.
Moving Forward as a Team
So, where does this leave the Spurs? Well, 2018 was where the issues started arising when tensions started growing between Kawhi Leonard’s camp and the Spurs. He requested a trade and in July 2018 both he and Danny Green were traded to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for Jakob Poeltl and DeMar DeRozan alongside a protected first-round draft pick for 2019. This was compounded when Tony Parker, who was practically a registered trademark of Spurs, left the team after spending his 17-year career there to head over to the Charlotte Hornets. Swiftly afterwards, Manu Ginobili retired after 16 years with the team. The team then signed up Quincy Pondexter, Dante Cunningham and Marco Belinelli, and re-signed Rudy Gay and Bryn Forbes.
The 2018 season wasn’t a complete disaster and they finished 7th seed in the Western Conference, which saw them qualify for the playoffs for the 22nd consecutive year. However, they lost in the first round against the Denver Nuggets.
The following season was a strange one for all NBA teams, with the complication of the pandemic. When it restarted, the Spurs was one of the 22 teams to be invited to play in the NBA Bubble for a place in the playoffs. However, for the first time since the 1996-97 season, they fell short of the mark and didn’t qualify for the postseason. The following season also saw a failure to qualify.
Moving forward as a team, they will pull out all the stops to at least make it through to the playoffs this time – as three years won’t go down well with the fans. The draft picks and lineup decisions have never been more important for the San Antonio Spurs.
Current San Antonio Spurs Players Under Contract
- Derrick White
- Dejounte Murray
- Thaddeus Young
- Doug McDermott
- Al-Farouq Aminu
- Jakob Poeltl
- Zach Collins
- Devin Vassell
- Joshua Primo
- Lonnie Walker IV
- Keldon Johnson
- Drew Eubanks
- Jock Landale
- Bryn Forbes
- Tre Jones
- Keita Bates-Diop
- Joe Wieskamp
Current San Antonio Spurs Free Agents
- Keita Bates-Diop (restricted)
- DeMar DeRozan
- Rudy Gay
- DaQuan Jeffries
- Trey Lyles
- Patty Mills
- Quinndary Weatherspoon
San Antonio Spurs 2021 NBA Draft
- Josh Primo
- Joe Wieskamp
Previous San Antonio Spurs Draft Selections Since 2000
Year Round Pick Player Pos Age Pre-Draft Team
2020 1 11 Devin Vassell SG 20 Florida State
2020 2 41 Tre Jones PG 20 Duke
2019 1 19 Luka Samanic PF 19 Union Olimpija (Slovenia)
2019 1 29 Keldon Johnson SF 19 Kentucky
2019 2 49 Q. Weatherspoon SG 22 Mississippi State
2018 1 18 Lonnie Walker SG 19 Miami (Fl)
2018 2 49 Chimezie Metu PF 21 USC
2017 1 29 Derrick White G 22 Colorado
2017 2 59 Jaron Blossomgame F 23 Clemson
2016 1 29 Dejounte Murray SG 19 Washington
2015 1 26 Nikoa Milutinov C 20 KK Partizan (Serbia)
2015 2 55 Cady Lalanne FC 23 Massachusetts
2014 1 30 Kyle Anderson PF 20 UCLA
2014 2 58 Jordan McRae G 23 Tennessee
2013 1 28 Livio Jean-Charles SF 19 ASVEL Basket (France)
2013 2 58 Deshaun Thomas F 21 Ohio State
2012 2 59 Marcus Denmon G 22 Missouri
2011 1 29 Cory Joseph PG 19 Texas
2011 2 59 Adam Hanga SF 22 Alba Fehervar (Hungary)
2010 1 20 James Anderson GF 21 Oklahoma State
2010 2 49 Ryan Richards FC 19 Gran Canaria (Spain)
2009 2 37 DeJuan Blair F 20 Pittsburgh
2009 2 51 Jack McClinton G 24 Miami (Fl)
2009 2 53 Nando De Colo G 22 Cholet Basket (France)
2008 1 26 George Hill G 22 IUPUI
2008 2 45 Goran Dragic G 22 Union Olimpija (Slovenia)
2008 2 57 James Gist PF 21 Maryland
2007 1 28 Tiago Splitter F 22 Baskonia (Spain)
2007 2 33 Marcus E Williams F 20 Arizona
2007 2 58 Georgios Printezis F 22 Ifestoss Limnou (Greece)
2006 2 59 Damir Markota PF 20 KK Cibona (Croatia)
2005 1 28 Ian Mahinmi C 18 STB Le Havre (France)
2004 1 28 Beno Udrih G 21 AX Armani Exchange Milan (Italy)
2004 2 52 Romain Sato GF 23 Xavier
2004 2 57 Sergei Karaulov C 22 Sakha Yakutia Yakutsk (Russia)
2003 1 28 Leandro Barbosa G 20 Bauro (Brazil)
2002 1 26 John Salmons GF 22 Miami (Fl)
2002 2 55 Luis Scola PF 22 Baskonia (Spain)
2002 2 56 Raed Farid Elhamali F 22 San Diego State
2001 1 28 Tony Parker G 19 Paris Basket Racing (France)
2001 2 55 Robertas Javtokas PF 21 Lietuvos Rytas (Lithuania)
2001 2 57 Bryan Bracey F 22 Oregon
2000 2 41 Chris Carrawell F 22 Duke
2000 2 54 Cory Hightower GF 20 Indian Hills
San Antonio Spurs Draft Picks FAQs
How Many Free Agency Players do the Spurs Have in 2022?
There is one Free Agency player for the Spurs in 2022. Although there are several free agency players in the team for 2021, the only Spurs free agent in 2022 is Lonnie Walker
Did the Spurs Have any First Round Picks in 2021?
Yes, they did. The San Antonio Spurs had one first-round pick in the 2021 NBA draft. They ended up with Josh Primo with the 12th overall pick. They also had one second-round pick, which they used to get Jow Wieskamp. This will be their rookie season as Spurs players.
Who Did the Spurs Draft in 2013?
In 2013, the Spurs had one first-round pick and one second-round pick. In the first round, they used their 28th pick to sign up Livio Jean-Charles, a 6 ft 5, 179 lbs Guard from ASVEL Basket, France. They also had the 58th pick in the second round of the draft. With this, they signed Deshaun Thomas, a 6 ft 7 220lbs Forward from Ohio State.
Who Did the San Antonio Spurs Draft in 1996?
This was a year when the San Antonio Spurs has no draft picks – either in the first or second round because they had traded all of their draft picks for this year. They traded their 18th pick along with J.R. Reid and Brad Lohaus to the New York Knicks for Monty William and Charles Smith. They traded their second-round pick to the Charlotte Hornets which originally got the J.R. Reid.