The Los Angeles Lakers have been and will continue to be one of the most talked about teams entering the offseason this year. Will they re-sign Julius Randle or Brook Lopez? Will they finally find a trade partner for Luol Deng? But one of the players who has flown under-the-radar has been Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
With Caldwell-Pope set to hit the market this offseason, the Lakers may be prepared to let him walk. Caldwell-Pope banked $17.7 million in one season, and unless he’s willing to take a major pay cut, the Lakers should be wise and let him move on. According to Jason Reed of LA Sports Hub, Caldwell-Pope could be headed to San Antonio.
On the season, Caldwell-Pope has averaged 13.8 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.2 assists while shooting 43 percent from the floor, including 38 percent from three-point range. This is one area where the Spurs desperately need help. With Kawhi Leonard out, the Spurs have tried to let the offense flow through the paint with LaMarcus Aldridge. But when he’s kicking it out to players like Danny Green, Patty Mills, and Rudy Gay on the wings, the results have been bottom-of-the-league bad.
The Spurs are ranked 28th in three-pointers attempted and made, and adding a long-range sniper like Caldwell-Pope could be key to keeping Kawhi Leonard while allowing the Spurs to move Green. If Gregg Popovich can entice Caldwell-Pope to head to San Antonio, then the Spurs,with Aldridge, Leonard, and Dejounte Murray, could challenge the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets in the Western Conference.
The Spurs will not hit 50 wins this season, but imagine what they could have done with a healthy Leonard and a shooter like Caldwell-Pope. While Reed believes that the Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angels Lakers are also good spots for him, the Spurs could give Caldwell-Pope his best option, scoring-wise.
The Sixers have J.J. Redick and Marco Belinelli (if they keep them) and while neither is as athletic as Caldwell-Pope, they all essentially offer the same output. As for the Lakers, Caldwell-Pope will be forced to play behind Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Julius Randle, and Kyle Kuzma. And that’s not taking into account if they were to bring in Paul George or LeBron James.
The Spurs can make Caldwell-Pope their main perimeter threat to offset the inside game of Aldridge and the slashing ability of Leonard. While teams may offer more money, history shows that the Spurs are consistent with winning.