DeJuan Blair has been out of the good graces of coach Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs since about the midpoint of the 2011-12 season, and potential trades have been floating around to make the fourth-year forward happy.
However, according to Spurs general manager R.C. Buford, the Spurs aren't going to be jumping on any deal that gets thrust upon them.
According to this report from Mike Monroe of the San Antonio Express News, while the organization empathizes with his situation, they neither have ruled out nor decided to press on with finding a potential trade partner for Blair.
Here's Buford on the situation from the same report:
“We understand the way he feels,” he said. “If we were in his shoes we may feel similar. Having said that, DeJuan helped us win a lot of games and we have not had anything presented to us that puts our team in a better position than moving forward with DeJuan.”
All that being said, trades can come together very quickly. Since the Spurs aren't ruling anything out, and being very diplomatic in their approach, only inside information could give us exactly where the team is with Blair.
Here's an outline of the best fits for Blair in a potential trade, and what San Antonio might be looking for with a trade partner.
With all the new faces in Minnesota, they still have a somewhat glaring need for an inside banger. Derrick Williams isn't built for that role. Greg Stiemsma was a nice addition, but he's not going to out-muscle anybody.
Althought the T'Wolves got decidedly better this offseason, there's still room for improvement on the front lines behind emerging superstar Kevin Love.
Minnesota would have to offer draft picks or a guy in a log jam for playing time like Dante Cunningham. There's no doubt San Antonio would want more than a second round draft pick for him, especially considering Minnesota will likely be close to the playoff picture.
Another team with some frontcourt depth issues, I think Blair would mesh nicely with what they've got going on in Washington.
Added pieces Nene and Emeka Okafor are both great players, but their injury history has to be a little bit troublesome with only Kevin Seraphin and Trevor Booker the only recipients of that time.
Without that depth, it's unclear what they could offer, either. But they're clearly a team in position to use a guy with that kind of skill set, and these two could be trade partners soon.
San Antonio Spurs
Yet, Blair's best fit might be in his own current backyard. An injury to Tiago Splitter has forced Blair into more extended time on the court during training camp and the team's game on Saturday night, and the Spurs don't have enough depth to play with their frontcourt pieces.
Keeping him around as an insurance policy/change of pace isn't a bad idea at all. You run the risk of a potential locker room problem, but if Tim Duncan can't keep the troops happy, no one can.
I think Blair sticks around SA for a little while, at least until Splitter is 100 percent or if Popovich thinks he can use Eddy Curry in any meaningful way as a non-roster invite.
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