Ranking Dallas Mavericks among division rivals: 4. San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs were in the play-in tournament last season, but they got knocked out in the opening game by the Memphis Grizzlies. They lost three key pieces of their rotation this offseason in DeMar DeRozan, Patty Mills, and Rudy Gay and could take a tumble in the standings. San Antonio added Thaddeus Young, Doug McDermott, Al-Farouq Aminu, and Zach Collins, plus drafted Josh Primo in the lottery, but it is difficult to see them being in the play-in tournament again.
Do the Spurs finally tank? Their roster feels like one of the least talented in the league, despite having multiple solid rotation pieces. Gregg Popovich can and likely will coach this team to 35 wins, but their roster got weaker, not stronger this offseason.
It could be a tight race between Houston and San Antonio for fourth in the Southwest Division, but both teams will be picking firmly in the lottery. Will Jalen Green be able to lead the Rockets to more wins than a Popovich-coached team quarterbacked by Dejounte Murray? Spurs fans are left wondering how much the Hall of Fame coach can get out of this roster.
San Antonio has multiple players that could take a step forward this season. Who steps up and becomes the key rotation pieces? Spurs fans are in for a rough year but expect them to be competitive every night.