It’s Zach Colwell from PtR with you all to break down each selection and any possible trades made by the franchise while attaching super meaningful grades to them, ha!
Before the draft kicks off make sure you have read all of Pounding the Rock’ wonderful draft content from our amazing staff of writers:
In what should be a fascinating night for the organization got even more tense last night when it was reported that the Spurs and Hawks were discussing a deal surrounding All-Star point guard, Dejounte Murray for Atlanta’s John Collins and a possible ‘Jrue Holiday’ draft package. So in a night of unpredictability, almost anything could happen for the Silver & Black. Strap in, it’s a draft time.
Pick 9 – Jeremy Sochan F – Baylor
With their first pick of the 2022 NBA Draft the San Antonio Spurs selected Jeremy Sochan; a 6-ft-9 versatile defensive forward out of Baylor. With high upside players like Dyson Daniels and Shaedon Sharpe coming off the board just before the Spurs were on the clock, Brian Wright goes with a prospect who has a high floor but room to improve on both ends of the court. Sochan is known as one of, if not the best defenders coming out of this years draft due to his versatility, lateral quickness and IQ. The question marks remain for Sochan on the offensive end where he isn’t a natural scorer or shooter, but he can create for others and is happy to do all the dirty work off the ball. The Baylor forward has recently turned 19-years-old so is one of the younger prospects in the draft which fits with the timeline of Primo, Vasell and Keldon. This is an extremely solid pick for the Silver & Black as Sochan should be able to help out next year playing a position of need for the franchise while still offering upside for the future.
Pick 20 – Malaki Branham W – Ohio State
The Spurs kept their second pick of the draft and use it to select Malaki Branham out of Ohio State. The 6-ft-5 wing was a one and done player in college who exploded onto the scene because of his three scoring level. Branham shot 42.5% from three and had a 59% true shooting on 13.3 points per game. This is a great value pick for San Antonio as Branham was projected to go slightly higher than 20, but fell a few picks due to teams taking chances on more boom or bust prospects like Dalen Terry and Tari Eason. The 19-year-old will provide the Spurs with an injection of scoring — something the team desperately needed at times last season when Dejoutne Murray went to the bench. The theme of this draft so far for the Silver & Black has been selecting high floor prospects who can help out from day 1 but with some untapped potential.
Pick 25 – Blake Wesley G – Notre Dame
The Spurs take their third player in the first round, this time differing from their first two selections by taking a project in guard Blake Wesley from Notre Dame. The 6-ft-4 Wesley is the third 19-year-old the Spurs have taken in this years draft. Wesley has an incredibly high ceiling and has a chance to be a really great NBA player and the steal of this draft years. Wesley is a silky offensive prospect who uses his long strides to get to the rim. The guard has some explosiveness to him when attacking the basket while having a smooth shooting stroke from the outside. The most exciting part of his offensive game is that he has a few moves in his bag to create for himself and has shown he can score out of the isolation set. Even better is his defense, he is already a great off ball defender that is disruptive and aggressive when jumping passing lanes. He works hard to stay in front of his opponent when defending on the ball and his quick hands forces turnovers at times. Wesley doesn’t project to be much of a playmaker and may find it hard to score against early contact on in his NBA career due to his light frame. Also, defensively he could struggle against bigger wings due to his size but when against most guards he shouldn’t struggle too much. To get Blake Wesley at #25 is phenomenal value for the Spurs, and after taking two ‘safer’ prospects with their first two picks it was nice to see them swing with their third.