Spurs Fined $25K for Violating NBA's Player Resting Policy

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistApril 18, 2021

San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills, right, talks with teammate DeMar DeRozan during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings Monday, Nov. 12, 2018, in Sacramento, Calif.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Rich Pedroncelli/Associated Press

Even after an easy win over the NBA's hottest team, the San Antonio Spurs were fined $25,000 for violating the league's resting policy, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.

DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and Patty Mills all sat out during Saturday's 111-85 win over the Phoenix Suns. The Suns entered on a 10-game home winning streak with 11 wins in their previous 12 games before the Spurs' shorthanded upset.

DeRozan is the Spurs' leading scorer at 21.2 points per game this season, while he, Poeltl and Mills all rank among the team's top five in minutes played.

Saturday's game represented the second night of a back-to-back on top of traveling for San Antonio, which lost at home to the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday. It was the squad's fifth game in seven days, all of which came in different cities.

Getting its top players some rest could prove valuable for a team battling for a spot in the postseason.

At 27-28, the Spurs sit two games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference. The No. 10 seed will also have the opportunity to compete in the play-in tournament.

Additionally, resting the starters provided an opening for younger backups to play important minutes. Devin Vassell, a 2020 lottery pick, scored a career-high 18 points in 25 minutes while Drew Eubanks impressed with 13 points and 13 rebounds in the win.

The league is well within its rights to fine teams as much as $100,000 for resting players, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, and the Spurs were in violation of the stated policy.