Blair is a fine role player

Back in 2009, DeJuan Blair was an unexpected pickup by the San Antonio Spurs early in the second round because he was projected to be a lottery pick at the time he entered the draft.

Despite his lack of size, Blair is a fine role player for the Spurs

One reason why he fell into San Antonio’s lap was his lack of height. At 6-foot-7, Blair is an undersized power forward. Still, he was deemed to be the steal of the draft.

He did not disappoint.

In his rookie season, Blair was the only Spurs player to play all 82 regular season games. He averaged 7.8 points, 6.4 rebounds and shot 55.6 percent from the field in just 18 minutes per game.

His 55 percent clip from the floor ranked best among rookies in 2009-10 season and on top of that, he was named to the All-Rookie Second Team.

Blair provided the Spurs instant hustle, rebounding and spark from the bench.

Knowing that he has a lot to improve, Blair worked on his game over the summer to try to expand his offensive and all-around game.

It did payoff; in just his second year with the Spurs, his role got bigger. He became the team’s starting center and did a great job at it.

In 65 games as a starter, he averaged 8.8 points and 7.3 rebounds while shooting better than 50 percent from the field.

His overall numbers slightly improved from last year. In 81 regular season games, Blair averaged 8.3 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 1.0 assist. He also got better from the foul line making 65.7 percent of his freethrows compared to a woeful 54.7 percent in his rookie year.

Blair thrived as the team's starting center and had improved his game from last season.

However, much like last year, Blair faded down the stretch as the Spurs turned to other options down low, cutting his playing time and touches late in the year as the Spurs inserted Antonio McDyess as the starting center.

He only played four playoff games, averaging 4.3 points, 3.3 rebounds while shooting just 33.3 percent from the floor in 12 minutes off the bench.

His lack of height continues to be a concern for the Spurs especially on the defensive end.

Nonetheless, given more consistent playing time and the right role, Blair seems to give promise to the Spurs as he continues to develop his game. He is a fine role player.

With McDyess’ possible retirement and Tim Duncan needing more help in the post, Blair together with Tiago Splitter would definitely see prominent roles in San Antonio next season.

6 thoughts on “Blair is a fine role player

  1. I think Blair is a better fir coming off the bench. He did a great job at it in his rookie season.

    Playing with and against the other teams second unit gives him more leverage because he has a nose for the rebound and will provide more energy say playing 15-20 minutes from the bench.

    He can’t be consistent as a starter because he is in a disadvantage with the matchup especially agaisnt the Mavericks, the Lakers or Portland.

  2. Robby

    Granted his productivity increased but if he’s to fully integrate himself into this team then his scoring will definitely have to go up as well . Beyond that I think he’ll do fine . Centers in the league overall to my mind aren’t what they once were anyway ! Everyone rails on as to how good D-Howard is but he can’t lead and when faced with real adversity …… he simply folds either like a cheap suit or tent .

    tophatal …………..

  3. Blair is great off the bench, I think he can help the Spurs better when he is coming of the bench.

    He has knack for rebounding and get score on put backs. IT harder for him to start because he is undersized at the power forward position. Coming off the bench somewhat negates his lack of size because he will be matched up with the other team’s bench players.

  4. Blair is one of my favorite Spur, I love his demeanor and attitude and he just plays his hearts out.

    If he can lose some weight maybe trim down to around 240-250 lbs. He will more agile and be able to play on faster pace and play above the rim.

    I looking for a great year for him next season.

  5. Pingback: Blair is a fine role player « Spurs World – "Everything about the … | | The Spurs StoreThe Spurs Store

  6. Everyone, thanks for all the comments and reads. I think Blair will be a big part of the Spurs’ future.

    Some may think he is better off going somewhere, but I still think he can help the Spurs to stay competitive.

    IMO, he is better when coming from the bench because of his energy, hustle and rebounding prowess.

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