San Antonio Spurs: Three skills Tre Jones will bring to the Spurs bench

San Antonio Spurs

Mar 7, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA; San Antonio Spurs draft pick Tre Jones (3) shoots over North Carolina Tar Heels guard Christian Keeling (55) during the second half at Cameron Indoor Stadium. (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)

The San Antonio Spurs rookie point guard brings a strong skill set to the team

The 2020 NBA Draft saw the San Antonio Spurs have one of their best drafts in recent memory. With the selections of both Devin Vassell and Tre Jones, the Spurs have set the tone for what this next decade of Spurs basketball will look like.

Drafting two defensive-minded players in different positions, both with obvious spot-up shooting ability and secondary playmaking upside, the Spurs will look to get back to the basics of what originally brought them to the top of the NBA.

The selection of Tre Jones solidifies this thought. Ball movement, efficient three-point shooting, and defense are top priorities for this team going into the 2020s.

Some Spurs fans and NBA analysts have deemed Tre Jones to be the next Patty Mills. It’s a high standard but he can live up to it.

There are three skills Tre Jones brings to the San Antonio Spurs, should he see early season action in 2020. The holes on this current Spurs roster are evident, but Tre Jones has the skill set to fill them quickly if the team asks him to.

Tre Jones can be a spark plug scoring option for the San Antonio Spurs

When you look at Jones’ shooting splits – 42.6 percent from the field, 36 percent from three, and 77 percent from the free-throw line – they don’t wow you. But how he scores his points matters, not all points are created equal.

Tre is one of the best spot-up shooters in his class, with a Patty Mills like ability to run off screens, catch and shoot from deep with ease.

He placed in the 89th-percentile in spot-up shooting during his sophomore year, averaging 1.119 points per possession when spotting-up.

He shot 43.4 percent when spot-up shooting, a number that bumps up by nearly nine percentage points to 51.6 percent when he’s open and shooting off the catch.

In terms of Jones’ overall ability to shoot the basketball, he placed in the 82nd percentile as a catch and shoot scorer. He placed in the better half percentile-wise (56th percentile) as an overall jump-shooter.

His shooting ability is best off the catch and in spot-up situations, but he’s more than capable of also scoring in isolation as well. He placed in the 75th-percentile as an isolation scorer last season, shooting a tick under 40 percent when in isolation.

So despite the strength here obviously being a shooter off the ball, Jones has a game off the bounce to keep defenses honest at the next level.

The significance of his ability to be a spark plug off the bench is important as the Spurs aren’t tied to veteran Patty Mills after this season.

Jones can fill a role similar to what Patty Mills has been asked to do, rather quickly. Jones is a “plus” version of Patty on the defensive end, while also showing an ability to facilitate offense for his team and score on and off the ball.

While San Antonio isn’t expecting Tre to be on the same level as a man who’s jersey will surely be in the rafters when his career is over, Jones can supply a similar output to what Mills has given this team for the better half of a decade.