Before we can ask “should they?”, we have to ask, “can they?”. The Spurs have little cap space to work with, along with some upcoming free agents that would be key for the Spurs to resign: Johnathan Simmons, Patty Mills, Dewayne Dedmon, and God-willing, Manu Ginobili. Along with these free agents to resign, the Spurs have ahold of the ridiculously large contracts of Pau Gasol, Lamarcus Aldridge, and Danny Green, with all three of them combined to be making $47,700,000 next year (38% of the cap). If the Spurs have any hopes of signing Chris Paul, they’re going to have to move mountains of cash to make it happen. But after the lack of production from Pau Gasol, the cupcake transformation of Lamarcus Aldridge, and the offense disappearance of Danny Green, I think Spurs fans will be content with giving up at least one of these former All-Pro’s.
If all the financial aspects fall into place and the Spurs get the opportunity to land Chris Paul, the Spurs must decide if they really want him, and if they really want to spend the money to get him. It’s no secret that Chris Paul is creeping up the age ladder, however we haven’t seen a dip in his overall play and stats over his 11 years in the league, as he averaged 18.1 PPG and 9.2 APG in 2016-17, which was right on pace for his career averages. But although his play has been consistent, his attendance on the court has been anything but that, having only played one full season throughout his 11-year career. Nevertheless, it’s Chris Paul. This would be a huge land that would alter the landscape of the league, but after the financials and the lack of attendance on the court, there’s one more thing holding me back from being sold on landing Chris Paul: Dejounte Murray.
This dude is a star in the making. Every time I watched him play he gave me goosebumps. His presence was electric on the court. Although he wasn’t given consistent minutes throughout the year as he had numerous spells in the D-League, he still had an impact every time he stepped on the court. When Tony Parker went down in the playoffs, breaking the heart of everyone in San Antonio, Dejounte was there to pick up the pieces as he stepped in and helped fill Tony’s shoes and helped lead the Spurs to a Western Conference Finals appearance, and without the fall of Kawhi Leonard, possibly the Finals and even a title. Now with his flashes of brilliance and gushing potential put on display for the world to see, Spurs fans should consider whether they want to delay the emergence of Dejounte by signing Chris Paul, or let the kid loose and give him the reigns of the Spurs PG position.
From what I saw from Dejounte Murray this season I’d cast my vote to turn away Chris Paul and get help in other positions. But even though I cast my vote for Dejounte, there’s still the matter of even getting the cash to land Paul, which leaves the Spurs with the difficult decision of deciding on who to let go from this 61-win season 2016-2017 team.