San Antonio Spurs waive 19-year-old former lottery pick Joshua Primo

Getty Images

Just two weeks after they exercised his third-year option, the San Antonio Spurs on Friday surprisingly waived second-year shooting guard Joshua Primo.

In a statement from Spurs Sports & Entertainment CEO R.C. Buford, he said: "It is our hope that, in the long run, the decision will serve the best interest of both the organization and Joshua."

The 19-year-old Primo was the 12th overall selection in the 2021 NBA Draft and averaged 5.8 points in 50 games – mostly off the bench – during his rookie season. He appeared in the Spurs' first four games this season and averaged 7.0 points, 4.5 assists and 3.3 rebounds as his role began to expand.

Primo’s release was particularly curious because the team picked up his third-year option two weeks ago, meaning his contract has been guaranteed for $4.1million this season and $4.3m next season. He can now be claimed on waivers, and if he clears, he can become an unrestricted free agent.

San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was asked about the decision to waive Primo before the team’s game against the Chicago Bulls on Friday, but he declined to answer, stating the organization will not be commenting any further.