The Nets poached Sean Marks from the Spurs. Will Marks poach any of his former players. Here’s a look at the Spurs free agents and who the Nets could pursue.
Tim Duncan: Duncan is obviously not leaving San Antonio, but as I am listing all free agents on this site, he too is listed. Duncan took a significant paycut for the Spurs to make room for other talent and has a $5.6 million player option for next year. Regardless of how the Spurs take care of him, it is clear: Duncan will remain a Spur or retire.
Manu Ginobili: Ginobili like Duncan has an option for pennies relative to worth, at $2.9 million. And, as with Duncan, he figures to stay with the Spurs or retire.
David West: West has a $1.6 million player option for next year. He can clearly make more on the open market; he near famously took a drastic paycut from $12 million to $1.4 million to become a Spur in the first place. So, with that, he may stay another season to continue competing for a championship. However, perhaps he looks elsewhere to make more money. If so, however, there is a balance: I would expect him to take a pay day from another contender, or at least a pseudo contender, but not from the Nets at this point in their rebuild.
Jonathan Simmons: As many Nets fans know, Simmons was a Nets summer leaguer who they cut, and who then thrived in San Antonio. Part of that may reflect poor talent evaluation from the Nets’ previous regime, but part of it may speak to another issue. Having talent is not just about acquiring talent, but developing it, and the Nets failed in this area. Simmons exposes another former regime problem: the Nets could not fit him on their roster but fit Lionel Hollins’ son, Austin. That comes off as “it’s just Summer League, it means nothing, who cares about one roster spot.” For a team desperate for any assets it can cobble together, every asset and roster spot must be treated like gold going forward. The Spurs have an $875,000 team option to keep Simmons, and are likely to exercise it.
Boban Marjanovic: Boban clearly does not play much in San Antonio, but there is a chance that he can be a useful NBA big. He’s well liked in NBA circles. He plays within such a strong culture. The Spurs have been vulnerable to losing pieces when those pieces have not been part of their core (think Tiago Splitter, Cory Joseph), and Boban may be a guy who can be pried. He could be a low cost fourth big in Brooklyn. Should the Spurs wish to keep Boban, he will be a restricted free agent if they choose to extend a qualifying offer.
Boris Diaw: Diaw has been a huge part of the Spurs’ fabric during this more recent run. The Spurs have a $7 million team option to retain him. Whether they decide to, at that number, is unclear. On one hand Boris is likely worth the salary on this market. On the other, if the Spurs look to add another future nucleus player or two, there is only so much money to go around. Still, if Diaw leaves the Spurs, he appears unlikely to go to a first building Brooklyn roster.
Andre Miller, Kevin Martin, Rasual Butler, and Matt Bonner: With these four pieces, there is but one theme: older veterans who once produced more (albeit at various levels), but now are valuable for little more than veteran, high character locker room leadership.
Trades: There is nothing here for the Nets to work with, at this point.