Enes Kanter has been turning heads at the NBA Pre-Draft Combine, and many have him slotted midway through the lottery, at number four to Cleveland or number six to the Wizards.
While the 6-11 center would be a nice addition to the San Antonio Spurs in a position the Spurs need help at, there’s not a chance Kanter will fall to the Spurs at 29, especially with his stock rising based just on drills. So Kanter in silver and black is just a pipe dream, right?
Maybe, but that didn’t stop the Spurs from sitting down with the 19-year-old in Chicago. While Kanter has been skipping interviews with the Jazz, Raptors and Bucks, who all have early picks, his agent Max Ergul had no problem with him spending time with the Spurs.
“I think coach [Gregg] Popovich has an opinion that really matters. If [Detroit president of basketball operations] Joe Dumars or Pop calls me or [Lakers general manager] Mitch [Kupchak] and asks for an interview, I’m not going to deny that. They may or may not get him, but I will give them their seniority. They are the guys who earned it. It’s the same thing with Kevin O’Connor.”
While Kanter would be a promising prospect in San Antonio, the Spurs would have to give up a lot to trade up into the lottery.
The Cavaliers, who have been rumored to take Kanter with their fourth pick, need some help on the wing. Former Spurs forward Alonzo Gee ended the season starting at small forward, and while Richard Jefferson would be an upgrade, would the Cavs be willing to take on his contract, while giving up a center who has drawn comparisons to Kevin Love and Al Horford?
But I would take the interview with a grain of salt. The Spurs are unlikely to make a major move in the draft, and have a knack for finding gems with their lower picks. Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors also sat down with the Spurs last year, but, as expected with this interview, it didn’t lead to a draft day trade.