The Austin Spurs ended their 2021 campaign a little less than a week ago with a brutal 124-103 loss to the Delaware Blue Coats in the first round of the single-elimination G League playoffs. Despite a disappointing finish to the winningest regular season in franchise history, first-time head coach Matt Nielsen and crew displayed uncanny adaptability amid a compressed schedule and massive roster turnover.
Luka Samanic and Tre Jones formed the highest-scoring duo (39.9 PPG) in the G League and had Austin surging to a 6-1 start through seven games. Unfortunately, a handful of positive COVID test results across the roster forced San Antonio to recall Luka and Tre early or risk postponing a fifth consecutive game. And an untimely hamstring injury to Robert Woodard II shortly after left them further shorthanded.
While the Austin Spurs could have used the excuse of a severely depleted roster to implode, they instead persevered through adversity to clinch their first playoff berth in two years. And with Anthony Mathis, Cam Reynolds, Khyri Thomas, Nate Renfro, London Perrantes, and Quinndary Weatherspoon flashing next-level talent, Austin might add a handful of new NBA players to their already impressive résumé.
Fellow Pounder and familiar face Jeph Duarte joins me via Zoom to chat about the Austin Spurs, the sustained excellence of their developmental program, and which players could potentially satisfy San Antonio’s roster vacancies.
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