The San Antonio Spurs will pursue Atlanta Hawks point guard Dennis Schroder during the next offseason, per league sources.
Schroder, a restricted free agent next year, is part of a stacked free agency class which also includes Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, Gordon Hayward & Co.
The Spurs view Schroder as a long term replacement to future hall-of-famer Tony Parker, who has been gradually regressing in recent years.
Last season, Parker averaged his worst career numbers since his rookie season in 2001-02. His tally of 11.9 points and 5.3 assists helped the Spurs win a franchise-best 67 games but the Frenchman couldn’t handle Russell Westbrook during the playoffs as San Antonio crashed out in the second round.
With Tim Duncan retiring this offseason and Manu Ginobili likely to exit the game next year, the Spurs are already planning for life without the Big 3.
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Dennis Schroder + Spurs: A good fit?
Schroder could prove to be a seamless fit with San Antonio since current Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer is a protegee of Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
The playbook implemented by Budenholzer uses pretty much the same principles employed by Popovich, which involves a motion offense and suffocating team defense.
In the aftermath of trading Jeff Teague, the Hawks are set to hand the starting point guard spot to Schroder. However, the German native could be hard pressed to turn down an offer from the Spurs, viewed by many as the best franchise in sports.
According to this Hoops Habit writer, the Spurs and Schroder could be perfect successor to Parker.
“Tony Parker isn’t getting any younger, even though he does plan on playing for a few more years. With Schroder in the mix, San Antonio can start to limit Parker’s minutes and replace the production it’ll likely lose with Patty Mills set to hit free agency,” he wrote.
It’s important to note that since Schroder is a restricted free agent, the Hawks will be in a position to match any and all offer sheets.
And as of this writing, the Spurs could struggle to generate enough cap room to offer Schroder a maximum-level contract. Having said that, stranger things have happened in free agency.
Dennis Schroder averaged 11.0 points and 4.4 assists as Atlanta’s sixth man last season.