How the San Antonio Spurs and Andray Blatche Can Save Each Other

Garrett Jochnau@@GarrettJochnauCorrespondent IIAugust 26, 2012

March 7, 2012; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Wizards head coach Randy Wittman (c) talks with power forward Andray Blatche (7) and guard Shelvin Mack (22) during a stoppage in play against the Los Angeles Lakers in the second half at Verizon Center. The Wizards won 106-101. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-US PRESSWIRE

The San Antonio Spurs have gone through the summer without making very much noise, with their only new addition to the roster being the signing of French combo-guard Nando De Colo.

However, now that the Spurs have waived Derrick Byars, their roster stands at 14, giving them the option to add another player.

With the majority of this summer's free agents having found homes for the upcoming season, the Spurs' available options are limited.

One name that keeps popping up as a possibility is Andray Blatche—the former Washington big man who was amnestied following disagreements with the team. 

Earlier this month, ESPN's Marc Stein reported that both the Spurs and the Heat have displayed interest in Blatche, but little noise has been made since the initial report.

However, following the departure of Byars, the Spurs may be clearing up a roster spot for the ex-Wizard.

The transaction would make perfect sense for San Antonio, as the team's biggest issue involved their lack of size, something which Blatche would surely improve.

At a solid 6'11'' and 260 pounds, he would give the team another potential option down low. Currently their roster features only three players above 6'8''—with one being the un-athletic, three-point specialist Matt Bonner.

Adding another big body to the build would help the team compete with powerful frontcourts, with the biggest competitor being the Los Angeles Lakers. The Spurs had trouble last season competing with Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol, but following the addition of superstar Dwight Howard, the Lakers will be stronger than ever.


Blatche put together a few solid seasons with Washington—the most impressive being his 2010-11 campaign in which he put up the solid averages of 16.8 ppg and 8.3 rpg.

As a talented, athletic and lengthy power forward, Blatche could fill the hole in San Antonio's roster.

However, the union would do more than just save the Spurs. Joining the roster could be what Blatche has needed his entire career. While he has displayed flashes of talent, his unruly demeanor has prevented him from reaching his ceiling.

In San Antonio, the organization has no tolerance for faulty behavior, as notoriously problematic players have cleaned up their acts before joining the team.

These players include Boris Diaw, who became lazy in Charlotte, and Stephen Jackson, whose past consists of multiple suspensions, both by his team and the league.

However, since joining the Spurs, neither player has made headlines for a negative reason, as it is clear that the leadership of Gregg Popovich has placed them on the right track.

Blatche should be no different, with Gregg Popovich providing the necessary guidance to eradicate his disobedient behavior.

With the mentorship of Tim Duncan to correlate with Pop's guidance, Blatche could be reborn in San Antonio as an effective and talented role player.

Blatche has stated (as reported by Donna Ditota of The Syracuse Post Standard) that he is willing to commit to a team and rid himself of off-the-court problems, if given the chance.

"My dream destination right now would be back on the court. For real. Just to get back on the court,” he said. “It's something I love to do. It doesn't matter if it's the Heat or the Spurs or the D League. Whatever. As long as I'm back on the court playing ball."

He seems ready to re-dedicate himself to basketball, and the Spurs should take advantage of the opportunity before another team does. 

For the Spurs, Blatche provides size and talent, and in return, they would give him the guidance he needs to make a strong return to the league.

For now, all we can do is wait, but with such a high reward, signing Blatche to a small contract seems like a no-brainer for San Antonio.