With the San Antonio Spurs' first 10 games now in the books, they now sit 3-7 and interesting trends are beginning to emerge. With the Spurs in a transition year, their record is about in line with expectations, though there have also been a number of surprises.
While some aren't necessarily positive, there have been some pleasant surprises that should get fans excited and keep them intrigued over the remainder of the regular season. With that in mind, let’s take a look at 5 surprising takeaways from San Antonio’s first 10 games.
Surprise #1: Dejounte Murray is the team’s best player
Entering the season, Dejounte Murray was expected to take on an increased offensive role following the departure of DeMar DeRozan. While a boost in scoring and playmaking was to be expected considering he's the team's primary ball-handler, he has managed to exceed expectations.
Murray is averaging a terrific 17.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 8.3 assists per game and has far and away been the team's best and most consistent offensive player. Additionally, his strong offensive play has helped prop up the team's better-than-expected offense (more on that in a bit).
In fact, he's increased his scoring by more than 2 points per game while his assists are up by nearly three. His shot creation, in particular, has been crucial to San Antonio's offensive success and has helped players like Jakob Poeltl, Derrick White, and Devin Vassell get easy baskets.
Murray has also been a terror on the defensive end, averaging 2.2 steals per game and 3.7 deflections (which ranks 10th in the NBA). As a result, the team ranks 7th in the NBA in steals and has been able to use the turnovers forced to get out in transition. Overall, it's clear that Murray is the team's best all-around player, however, it's surprising just how much better he's been than any of the Spurs.