Blair averaged 8.8 points and 7.3 rebounds as an unorthodox starting center. In mid-March, he was benched in favor of McDyess, whose defensive chops the coaching staff deemed more valuable in the postseason.
After Blair ballooned to nearly 300 pounds late in the season, Popovich challenged him to shed excess weight. In response, Blair dropped 20 pounds by cutting fast food out of his diet.
Heading into the summer, Popovich has challenged Blair again.
Blair’s future with the Spurs, the coach said, is not aligned with "working on his jumper or developing a jump hook. It’s not defense."
"It’s personal discipline, responsibility and maturity," Popovich said. "That will get him to the next level. Short of that, he’ll have a hard time."