Is Popovich the key to the Spurs landing their rumored all-star trade target?

Gregg Popovich
Gregg Popovich / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

The 2023–24 regular season is almost over for the San Antonio Spurs but for fans of the team, the really interesting part is about to begin. San Antonio can have up to $25 million in cap space, a high lottery pick, and plenty more picks in their war chest, all of which could result in them having a big offseason.

One potential trade target could be former Spurs and current Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray, who recently opened up about his relationship with former coach Gregg Popovich. Murray revealed that Pop was "like a father to him," and they still stay in touch, with Pop even teasing him about recently taking 44 shots in a game.

The Spurs were rumored to be considering bringing Murray back ahead of the trade deadline but they ultimately decided to stand pat. With Victor Wembanyama looking more and more like a superstar with each game, the Spurs could be aggressive this summer.

Should the Spurs trade for Dejounte Murray this summer? 

The Spurs may look to improve their roster by addressing their weaknesses at point guard and small forward but specifically at point guard. They could theoretically do both in the 2024 NBA Draft, where they could have two top-10 picks if the Toronto Raptors top-six protected pick conveys in May. Even still, they could target a veteran such as Murray in the trade market, especially given his relationship with Pop and his having spent the first five seasons of his career in San Antonio.

His playmaking and improved outside shooting should pair well with Wembanyama. There are also still several players on the Spurs roster—Devin Vassell, Keldon Johnson, and Tre Jones—that Murray has already played with. That would make his potential return to the Spurs easier compared to San Antonio signing a free agent or drafting a point guard and having to figure out their system. 

All in all, San Antonio has the tools needed to build around Wembanyama this summer. After mulling trading for Murray during the season, they could revisit the idea and Murray seems open to playing for Pop again.