It's been an up-and-down career for DeJuan Blair as a Spur, with more low than high points in recent memory. The undersized "big man" has been a target of trade speculation and criticism at times since Boris Diaw's arrival late last season, and his time in San Antonio could come to an end before the Feb. 21 trade deadline.
Chris Broussard of ESPN had a few interesting tweets during the Spurs' undermanned 103-89 win over the Bulls in Chicago tonight, throwing out the names of several teams who are potentially interested in Blair's services.
"Will SA finally part with DeJuan Blair? Word is he could be gone before 2/21. SA talked with Toronto wks ago but nothing brewing now."
"SA offered D Blair to Detroit but nothing. Hear Boston, Miami, Portland could have interest."
It's total speculation at this point, and it doesn't seem any potential return pieces have been named, but there does appear to be a level of attraction for teams that need rebounding help.
Again, any time a trade rumor surfaces around the San Antonio Spurs, it's important to discern what is real and what isn't. It's important to try, at least. But we all know that rarely happens. The reaction to purported trade proposals is what most fans live for, so let's explore what might be out there considering the teams Broussard named.
Blair's contract is worth only slightly more than $1 million this season, so there are options with each of these teams. (Hey, Boston, how about that Fab Melo guy, please?) Obviously, we don't know the Spurs' intentions in terms of whether or not they'll package Blair with other pieces, but looking at it on the surface with only his contract in mind, it wouldn't be difficult to move his salary within the CBA's money-matching guidelines.
But because Blair's salary is relatively small, it will be a challenge to move him for a highly impactful player in return without including other contracts or getting another team involved to facilitate the transaction. San Antonio's perceived weaknesses include a lack of athleticism in the frontcourt and a less-than-desirable backup point guard situation (though Nando De Colo did a hell of a job trying to shut down that opinion tonight).
Blair showed a ton of promise as an energetic rebounder after being drafted in the second round of the 2009 draft, but he has fallen out of the rotation after a productive early career due to team acquisitions at his position, height issues in the frontcourt and, at times, attitude problems. Many Spurs fans have spent much of the past two seasons pushing for a trade of the former Pittsburgh Panther, and they may finally see that happen.
The trade deadline is 10 days away, so any potential action should be expected in the near future. Whether that future includes DeJuan Blair in a Spurs uniform remains to be seen.
In the mean time, have at it, folks. Trade away!
And, as always, we'll keep you up to date with any news we hear along the way, so keep up with Pounding the Rock as the trade deadline frenzy approaches.