I know what you’re thinking. “Another Zhaire Smith article from this guy?” You betcha! Previously, I wrote about how Zhaire Smith is heir apparent to Kawhi Leonard. And now I’m here to tell you why Zhaire Smith would be a perfect fit for Greg Popovich’s system in San Antonio.
Smith is a freak athlete. This is no secret. And if you have been living under a rock and didn't know this information, he proved it at the NBA Combine last weekend. Smith put up insane numbers in a variety of drills and cemented himself as one of the premiere athletes in this year’s NBA Draft.
Although Smith is listed as a forward in this graphic, I see him playing shooting guard and maybe small forward with the ability to guard three positions. ICYMI our fearless leader Zach Mason wrote a great article examining Smith’s ceiling as as NBA player.
San Antonio really only has a few true shooting guards on their roster in Danny Green, Manu Ginóbili, and Brandon Paul. Danny Green is on the decline, and Manu is probably going to do Manu until he is a cadaver being dragged off the basketball court. The point being that there is a need for a young shooting guard on the roster.
As for fit, Greg Popovich will take any basketball player with a high motor, a good feel for the game, and the ability to play defense, and he will find a role for them in the rotation. Smith fits all of the aforementioned criteria of what it takes to become a great San Antonio Spur. It’s hard to peg Pop’s offense as a particular system. For years the team ran inside-out with David Robinson and Tim Duncan down low, along came Tony Parker and the offense ran around a drive a kick mentality. Popovich evolves with his players and would love to add a weapon like Zhaire Smith to his bag of tricks.
Keenan Evans recently compared his former teammate to San Antonio legend Tim Duncan saying “because he is such a low-key dude.” Could Zhaire Smith be the next king of San Antonio? Do you think Zhaire would be a good fit for San Antonio? Let me hear from you! Comment below or get at me on twitter @dylansmyth92.