Lauvergne's signing will help bolster Spurs' thin frontcourt

The Spurs’ 2017-18 roster continues to take shape.

Less than a week after signing forward Rudy Gay to a two-year deal, the Silver and Black reportedly have agreed to terms with another free agent who will be counted on to help bolster the team’s depth.

Center/forward Joffrey Lauvergne, who played 20 games with Chicago last season, has signed a two-year contract with San Antonio, according to multiple sources. The Vertical first reported the news. Lauvergne’s signing will help shore up the Spurs’ thin frontcourt.

Lauvergne, a 25-year-old native of France, became an unrestricted free agent Saturday when the Bulls withdrew their qualifying offer. Lauvergne, 6-foot-11 and 220 pounds, has averaged 6.1 points and 4.0 rebounds in three NBA seasons. He played his first two seasons with the Denver Nuggets, who traded him to the Oklahoma City Thunder last August.

OKC traded Lauvergne, Anthony Morrow and Cameron Payne in February to Chicago for Taj Gibson, Doug McDermott and a 2018 second-round draft pick. Lauvergne averaged 4.5 points and 3.4 rebounds in his 20 games with the Bulls.

Lauvergne had his best season with Denver in 2015-16, averaging 7.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 17.6 minutes. He started 15 of the 59 games he played that season.

Lauvergne was selected by Memphis in the second round of the 2013 NBA draft, but he was traded to Denver on the same night. Lauvergne was the 55th overall pick of the draft.

The Spurs’ frontcourt depth took a hit this summer when Pau Gasol, David Lee and Dewayne Dedmon all opted out of the final year of their contracts.

Lee and Dewayne have drawn interest from other teams, but Gasol is expected to return to San Antonio after declining his $16.2 million option to free up salary-cap space for the Spurs. Gasol reportedly opted out of his contract to seek a long-term deal with San Antonio.

Re-signing forward Jonathon Simmons, a restricted free agent, remains on the Silver and Black’s to-do list. The team is also waiting to hear back from veteran guard Manu Ginobili, who is expected to announce this month whether he’ll return for his 16th season with San Antonio or retire.

The Spurs went 61-21 and reached the Western Conference Finals last season, their first since iconic power forward Tim Duncan retired last July.

© 2017 KENS-TV


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