Spurs Trade Lands $85-Million Point Guard for Picks, Players….

Spurs Trade Proposal Lands $85-Million Point Guard for Picks, Players.

There’s only one certainty to the San Antonio Spurs‘ offseason agenda, and it’s their plans to acquire a starting point guard to pair with basketball prodigy Victor Wembanyama.

They’ve been linked to Trae Young, amongst other names as potential targets.

But most recently, it’s Fred VanVleet who’s been tabbed as a potential fit.

In a roundtable column for Bleacher Report, Grant Hughes put together a Spurs trade proposal for the 2019 NBA champ.

In exchange for VanVleet, Hughes has San Antonio sending Keldon Johnson, Devonte’ Graham, and two first-round picks (2025, 2026) to the Houston Rockets.

VanVleet averaged 17.4 points, a career-high 8.1 assists, 3.8 rebounds, and 1.4 steals in 73 games for Houston this season.

Hughes cited the drop off in the Spurs’ play when Tre Jones was off the floor this season as a primary reason the Spurs should consider a deal for VanVleet.

“The cellar-dwelling San Antonio Spurs posted a plus-5.2 net rating with Tre Jones and Victor Wembanyama on the floor but collapsed (minus-16.6) whenever anyone else manned the point guard position” Hughes wrote on April 27. “Replace Jones with a real difference-maker, move him to a backup spot and it stands to reason the Spurs could vault up the standings as Wemby becomes a no-questions-asked All-NBA superstar next year.”

As well as his own pessimism on a Trae Young, Victor Wembanyama-lead San Antonio Spurs.

Hughes: ‘I Can’t Stand the Trae Young Fit’

Young is the most popularly mentioned trade target for San Antonio. But the fit isn’t perfect.

Hughes has his own concerns.

“Personally, I can’t stand the Trae Young fit in San Antonio,” Hughes wrote. “This is Wembanyama’s team, and the downsides—ball dominance, terrible defense, iffy leadership—just aren’t worth the offensive boost Young could theoretically provide.”

Ball dominance is a double-edged sword when talking Wembanyama.

Per Stathead, only 12 players logged 2000 or more minutes and recorded a 30-percent or higher usage rate in the regular season.

Wembanyama sits among them, next to household names like Anthony Edwards, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jalen Brunson, and Luka Doncic.

Young missed the cut by 58 minutes, but posted a 30.3-percent usage rate in 54 games with the Atlanta Hawks.

The two stars aren’t both guards, so that makes the threat of a bad fit less intimidating. Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic play together just fine. As do De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, and Tyrese Maxey and Joel Embiid.

It’s when two ball-dominant guards pair up that the threat becomes more of a reality. Which is arguably why Young is on the outs in Atlanta, as his fit with Dejounte Murray hasn’t yielded the anticipated results.

VanVleet posted a 19.7-percent usage rate this season. Which he countered with a career-high 31.1-percent assist rate.

He’s the type of off-ball distributor that Wembanyama could thrive with.

Hughes: VanVleet is ‘Anti-Trae’

Hughes’ argument for a VanVleet trade to San Antonio is essentially that he’s the antithesis of all things Trae Young.

The Spurs would be better off adding a proven winner who’ll play hard, do the little things and basically operate as an anti-Trae on all fronts,” Hughes continued. “That’s Fred VanVleet, someone the Spurs could pry away by dipping into their deep pool of draft assets.

VanVleet is coming off a career season. He’s 30 years old, and headed into the ninth year of a storied NBA career.

He plays defense, has a loud voice in the locker room, and most importantly; is under contract through the 2025-2026 season.

Young’s contract runs through 2026-2027, and at $48-million, that makes a big difference.

None of this holds relevance to whether or not the Rockets will indeed consider trading VanVleet, though. Houston is coming off of a feel-good, rebound season for the rebuild, and he played a large part in that.

If they do look at upgrading the roster though, and feel comfortable handing Jalen Green the keys at point guard full time next season, the San Antonio Spurs will come calling.

Victor Wembanyama’s career foundation could very well depend on who’s suiting up next to him at point guard next season.

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