The San Antonio Spurs are on the verge of losing key stars as reports of retirement involving Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker and Tim Duncan take over the NBA. While Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge and Danny Green are remarkable substitutes to the outgoing Big Three, another superstar in the making might just be what the NBA team needs to dominate the Western Conference. So how can the San Antonio Spurs overtake Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook as well as the Golden State Warriors?
The answer appears to be in the Miami Heat roster. Sources believe that the San Antonio Spurs are looking into signing free agent Hassan Whiteside this offseason. With the star power of the former D-league star, who helped Luol Deng and Dwyane Wade carry the Miami Heat in the NBA playoffs 2016, the Kawhi Leonard team might just become an unstoppable force in the NBA next season.
"I want to go to a team that's about winning," said Whiteside of his free agency plans. The Miami Heat star added, "[A team] that has a good understanding of what it takes to win and a good city with a good fan base." Needless to say, the San Antonio Spurs easily fit the bill. Under the Tim Duncan era, the Kawhi Leonard team has never missed a playoffs spot. Adding Whiteside in an already strong roster will just make the team an incredibly dangerous group in the Western Conference.
"It isn't just an offensive game," said Pat Riley of the Miami Heat during the NBA playoffs. He added, "You talk about up-tempo basketball, you go back and find our best offensive games and we probably held teams to 38 or 39 or 40 percent shooting. We were getting blocked shots, deflections, turning the ball over. Your offense is only as good as what you do on the defensive end.
Riley further noted, "You want to explode out of there, then you better make some stops. You better rebound the ball. That's why Hassan is so important to us. He'll block shots. He'll rebound the ball. He'll change 10 other shots. He'll scare the hell out of four or five other people coming into the paint. He's got some intangibles that, simply, you just cannot find."
The Miami Heat have been vocal of their goal to re-sign Whiteside this offseason. While no concrete plans have been made, the two parties involved appear to be eager to work together once again. However, rumors are rife that Whiteside could still walk out of the Miami Heat if a max contract is not offered this NBA season.
"The narrative around Whiteside has been that he'd like to stay in Miami," reveals Steve Kyler of the free agency situation of the NBA star. He added, "He's comfortable there, has had success there and they can pay him the most money of any team in the league. Assuming that's the offer from the HEAT, there is a better than average chance he signs a new deal. If the HEAT try to play games, sources close to the situation say Whiteside will go shopping."
What do you think? Should the San Antonio Spurs pursue Hassan Whiteside? Will he be a good fit to play alongside Kawhi Leonard, LaMarcus Aldridge and Danny Green? Or will the 27-year-old center be better off with Dwyane Wade in the Miami Heat?