5. San Antonio's ball movement was a thing of beauty
My colleague, Jonah Kubicek, wrote about this earlier this month, but the point is worth repeating: the Spurs have always been one of the best passing teams in NBA history. This season, they finished second in the league in assists per game with 27.9 after ranking 16th with 24.4 last season. That's quite an increase.
On top of that, they finished with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.19, which is now the new NBA record.
There's a lot to be said about playing the right way, and even though it didn't produce winning results over half of the time, the guys are starting to figure things out. Dejounte Murray's stunning 9.2 assists to 2.6 turnovers are the biggest reason the Spurs excelled so much in this department. Someone else who certainly helped was Tre Jones at 3.4 assists to 0.7 turnovers.
Not only did the Spurs' impressive ball movement make them more fun to watch on the court, but it also made them much more diverse offensively. Opposing coaches frequently commented on how it was difficult to gameplan for San Antonio since everyone knows how to both share and avoid coughing up the ball.
Finishing in the top five in both assists (2nd) and limiting turnovers (5th) is usually a recipe for much more success than the Spurs had, and if they can play similarly next season with some needed additions, they should finally be eyeing a playoff spot instead of the Play-In Tournament next season.