Spurs keep Austin Daye, make you re-think Austin Daye

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Who am I to question the Spurs’ brain trust of Executive of the Year R.C. Buford and Coach of the Year Gregg Popovich, but I really didn’t understand the Nando de Colo-Austin Daye trade. San Antonio and Toronto swapped the marginal players in February, and I guess I could see Daye making Spurs a little more balanced on the backend of their roster. I guess.

But de Colo had an expiring contract, and $250,000 of Daye’s $1,063,384 2014-15 salary was guaranteed. In the grand scheme, $250,000 was unlikely to matter, but why risk that for practically no on-court gain?

Daye is a poor defender and streaky shooter whose good runs aren’t even that good.

If I didn’t think a $250,000 cap hit was worth it, I really don’t see the point of taking the full $1,063,384 hit to keep Daye. But the Spurs will do just that.

Shams Charania of RealGM:

The San Antonio Spurs will keep forward Austin Daye beyond Monday’s contract guarantee deadline, a league source told RealGM.

Because these are the Spurs, who do everything right, I’m already going to declare myself wrong. They deserve all the benefit of the doubt, and I deserve none.

If I squint really hard, I can see the potential.

Daye made 41 percent of his corner 3s his first two seasons with the Pistons. Bouncing between Detroit, Memphis, Toronto and San Antonio the previous two years, he shot 25 percent from the corner. Maybe the Spurs believe they can repair his shot and train him to use his lengthy wingspan to become a 3-and-D player.

Right now, Daye is neither a 3-nor-D player, but if anyone can salvage his NBA career, it’s the Spurs.