The perfect trade Spurs must offer Thunder for Kemba Walker
The league was caught by surprise when the Boston Celtics decided to part ways with Kemba Walker along with a 2021 first-round pick, and a 2025 second-round pick to Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Al Horford, Moses Brown, and a 2023 second-round pick back in mid-June. This brings us to the San Antonio Spurs.
Despite his recent relocation, many still believe that the Thunder won’t be Walker’s final destination as he may be traded to another team prior to the start of the 2021-22 season. Certainly enough, the four-time All-Star can still attract trade suitors and the San Antonio Spurs could come calling and emerge as one of his potential landing spots in the near future.
Here is a trade that could work out for both squads:
Spurs trade Dejounte Murray, Jakob Poeltl, and Devin Vassell for Walker and a 2021 second-round pick.
According to Bleacher Report, the Spurs are reportedly open to trading away their young point guard in Dejounte Murray, especially heading to the 2021 NBA Draft. The 24-year-old recently concluded his fourth professional campaign where he averaged career-best numbers of 15.7 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 5.4 assists in 67 games played.
Despite getting an increased role with the Spurs, the team’s front office remains unsure whether or not Murray has the mold to be a franchise player in the future. Trading him away to the Thunder could be a blessing in disguise for him as he can see more action as the team’s potential top point guard while playing alongside Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
The Spurs will also have to throw in a couple of capable role players in Jakob Poeltl and Devin Vassell to complement their bid to acquire Walker. Both players are still young as they are currently playing at the age of 25 and 20, respectively. Though they have yet to reach their full potential as of the moment, their continuous improvement can help them blend in within the Thunders’ youth-laden roster moving forward.
On the other hand, the Spurs will be receiving an All-Star caliber player in Walker who has been a shell of his former self in recent years. Last season, he continued to nurse his knee injury which led him to appear in 43 games and average 19.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 4.9 assists.
After his stint in Boston didn’t turn out as expected, Walker would definitely benefit from a change in scenery this time around. Similarly, the Spurs, much like Walker, have also struggled in recent seasons which led them to settle into being a mediocre team in the stacked Western Conference. Injecting a new face at the Spurs’ forefront could potentially help the team regain its momentum and get back to being a playoff squad once again.
Additionally, slotting Walker alongside DeMar DeRozan could also bring the best out of the two players. In this case, Walker will be given a reliable running mate while DeRozan will be given a steady playmaker similar to how he used to play with his former teammate in Kyle Lowry with the Toronto Raptors.
To top off the trade, the Spurs will also be receiving a 2021 second-round pick from the Thunder which could help them in their rebuilding efforts, given the team’s excellent scouting department.
Given that San Antonio isn’t particularly a marquee free agent destination, the Spurs trading for Walker and pairing him with DeRozan could possibly give Gregg Popovich his last shot at a title before he retires in the near future.
The Thunder have yet to aggressively scour the market for trades but the Spurs would be wise to call their number in order to acquire the star point guard who could potentially bring them back on the right track in the years to come.