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  1. #1
    Veteran Dejounte's Avatar
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    Love him or hate him, this article has great insight into the Spurs and DJ's mind & history.

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    Notable quotes:


    "He’s also one of the league’s most refreshing and effective anomalies, a lead ballhandler who doesn’t take or make a bunch of threes; most of Murray’s damage is inflicted from the midrange—a space defenses are typically happy to concede—where he’s tirelessly honed a reliable jumper. “His pull-up now is basically automatic,” says Spurs guard Derrick White."

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    "Today, he’s San Antonio’s most vital building block, with present-day two-way production that still barely sniffs what his ultimate ceiling can be. “This is my first year in the NBA being free to just, you know, play,” Murray says. “Coach Pop, he let me off the leash a little bit.” To compare Murray to the rest of the league, heading into this season only 11 players in the last 10 years averaged at least 15 points, seven rebounds and five assists per game for an entire season. All have made an All-Star team. Murray will likely finish his fifth season on the right side of that threshold, hinting at a very near future where triple doubles (of which he’s accrued four this year) are a regular occurrence."
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    "
    When I talk to Spurs people, there's a belief about Dejounte,” Borrego says. “They really believe ‘This is the guy that’s gonna lead us as our point guard into the future.’ ”"
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    "
    “There is just an approach that he has. And I think people see that and gravitate to that,” Spurs general manager Brian Wright says. “In the spot that I sit in, you’re betting on the human, their willingness to work and how much it means to them. I know that he has all of the attributes, all of the desire and all of the commitment to be an incredible player in this league for a long time. And that’s what we expect him to be.”"
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    "
    He was in practice,” laughs Grizzlies forward Kyle Anderson, a former Spurs teammate who remembered how another ex-teammate, Mills, was a frequent victim. “Poor Patty.”"
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    "
    For good reason, players don’t actively seek out the situation Walker found himself in. According to Synergy Sports, Murray ranks in the 95th percentile as an isolation defender this season. Taking him on without help isn’t advised and he knows it. “A lot of players are gonna call a pick-and-roll on Dejounte,” he says. “I just have that pride where you’re not gonna beat me one-on-one. It's not happening.” Before games, Murray’s teammates like to place bets on how many opponents he’ll rip."
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    "
    To be most feared when the other team has the ball, as Murray is, subverts what it means to be a franchise player in today’s NBA. But while defense is the first paragraph of his game’s CV, it’s a steadily improving jump shot that’s shredding any preconceived notion about what Murray can eventually become. Entering the league, no part of his skill set created more doubt. Now, with long arms, a high release and a tight-enough handle to get where he’s comfortable whenever he wants, it’s a legitimate weapon. (Only Chris Paul, Brandon Ingram and Devin Booker have made more pull-up twos than Murray this season.)"
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    "
    When Murray first landed in San Antonio, Chip Engelland, the team’s renowned shot doctor, laid out a long-term vision and told him, “You’re either gonna execute the plan or not.” Says Murray, “What he meant by that is, ‘We’re not gonna try to go be Stephen Curry overnight.’ ”"
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    "The formula requires sweat, trust and patience. Do you want to be a great shooter or do you want to be a good shooter? is the question Engelland, Murray’s Yoda, asks over and over; it drives their relationship and all his progress."
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    "
    The two began around the basket then worked their way to the free throw line, where both believe Murray can someday crack 85%. (He’s at 80.3 this year, up from 70.0 as a rookie.) They’ve since ventured out to the midrange and have sights set on conquering the three-point line, where he shoots just 31.8% on 3.0 attempts per game. From how far apart his fingers should be on the ball to where it needs to fit in the palm of his hand right before it’s released, Murray feels confident in his shot because he’s still learning how to do it."
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    "We still have a long way to go, but we’re on the right road to being what I know I can be one day,” Murray says. “Chip really wants to see me be great. Like, he’s a big reason why I want to wake up every morning and go to the gym and work.”"
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    "
    There’s also a direct throughline here between Murray’s upbringing and self-belief as it relates to the slow erosion of weaknesses in his skill set. “When I came in a lot of people said, ‘He can’t shoot.’ S---, that’s fine with me. S---, I was never taught. My life wasn’t like these kids getting drove to practice, getting drove to the gym, getting drove to games. I wasn’t at the gym with a trainer telling me to lock my elbows, snap my wrists, use my legs,” he says. “It’s insane, the stuff I didn’t know. I was just playing raw in high school and college. The Spurs are the first people to really teach me how to play the game.”"
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    "
    “I’m an offseason guy that really likes to take, you know, great, big, big jumps,” he says. “There’s guys who look like stars their first year, they fade away, or they look like stars a couple years, they fade away,” Murray says. “I like Kawhi Leonard’s development, not just because he was a Spur [or] a good friend of mine. I watched him a lot when I got here. If you go check the stats, he got better every year. It wasn’t just one year, then he waited three years. It was a jump every year, every category.”
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    There’s one part of Murray’s game that Pop would like to see even more of, too: “He'll turn down threes from time to time and I’ve got to go to him and let him know that the worst thing that can happen is it doesn’t go in. You know, your family still loves you and you still get a paycheck. The with it. Shoot the next one.”"
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    "
    I know that there’s so much room for me to improve because I’m still playing catch-up with everybody in this league, damn near,” Murray says. “I had to go a whole totally different route than a lot of guys my age. On the basketball side of things I never had a trainer. Nobody knew the game to teach me the game. My uncles, we played it for fun at the parks. We were never taught it. We’d have no male figures around us. Male figures around us was drug dealers.”"
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    When the Spurs draft a new player, Murray immediately asks the front office for his phone number. Dinner at Murray’s home is an unofficial part of the onboarding process. He goes out of his way to impart lessons, from why it’s O.K. to spend time in the G League early on to steps they can take to earn the coaching staff’s trust and know what’s going to be expected from Day One. Murray isn’t shy about assuming that burden, and when San Antonio missed the postseason in 2020 (for just the second time since he was born), he felt responsible.

    https://www.si.com/nba/2021/05/11/de...ng-daily-cover
    Last edited by Dejounte; 05-11-2021 at 10:08 AM.

  2. #2
    Believe. PrimeMinister's Avatar
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    One of my favorite pieces of sports journalism in recent memory.

    His analysis of Kawhi’s steady jumps from year to year is exactly what I’ve been saying here in terms of evaluating a course of development for a player. It’s not just how good a player is at that current moment in time- but how good they are in comparison to the month before, and season before. The trajectory of development Kawhi displayed is one mirrored by Dejounte at this very moment.

    Keep this in mind as Lonnie comes back next year, as Keldon returns, as Luka comes back. Leaps year over year are more important than the product you currently see on the court from rookie contract players.

    Dejounte is a ing keeper. He has some very good basketball in front of him.

  3. #3
    Veteran rjv's Avatar
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    nice read. i agree that murray has proven that the triple-double isn't fluke with him; it's starting to become a consistent occurrence. of course, the current thinking on murray is that he doesn't feel like a PG all the time, that he doesn't pass the eye test. which is a criticism i'm not sure i entirely agree with.

  4. #4
    Believe.
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    And yet,some people want to still trade him, even tho he's on;y had 3 full years of playign time. Dude's giving us, 16/7/5. He could easily develop into a 20ppg while being a leader in the club house.

  5. #5
    Veteran BG_Spurs_Fan's Avatar
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    His improvement each year has been wonderful to watch. He has tightened his handle, limited bad passes, he's able to get to the spots he wants and his jumper has quietly become very good, his form is different compared to his pre injury seasons.

    His mid range and free throw shooting improvement show there's upside for him to extend it to the 3 point line. If he's able to do it in the next couple of years he'll become a well rounded player.

    I'd like to see his defense getting better and especially going to the free throw line more, where he's regressing each season (on a per minute rate). He's added a nice floater to his game but he doesn't drive enough and despite of his better finishing he's shooting less and less at the rim and settling for jumpers way more.

    All in all his development has been very good and he's a 3 point shot away from being a very valuable player. When watching him as a rookie I'd never have thought he'd develop into a low turnover type of PG He has a better assist to turnover ratio than the likes of Jrue and Kyrie.

  6. #6
    Veteran rjv's Avatar
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    One of my favorite pieces of sports journalism in recent memory.

    His analysis of Kawhi’s steady jumps from year to year is exactly what I’ve been saying here in terms of evaluating a course of development for a player. It’s not just how good a player is at that current moment in time- but how good they are in comparison to the month before, and season before. The trajectory of development Kawhi displayed is one mirrored by Dejounte at this very moment.

    Keep this in mind as Lonnie comes back next year, as Keldon returns, as Luka comes back. Leaps year over year are more important than the product you currently see on the court from rookie contract players.

    Dejounte is a ing keeper. He has some very good basketball in front of him.
    heck, you can even go back and look at other PG stats from the past and see how their stats rose over the first few years.

  7. #7
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    As a pg he still has a lot to learn and some of it i'm not sure you can learn, you either have them by nature, talent, or you don't. He has promise but we have to see more, i'm not sold yet if we're talking championship, all NBA team pg. If we're talking about a serviceable pg then he can be that.

  8. #8
    Believe.
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    As a pg he still has a lot to learn and some of it i'm not sure you can learn, you either have them by nature, talent, or you don't. He has promise but we have to see more, i'm not sold yet if we're talking championship, all NBA team pg. If we're talking about a serviceable pg then he can be that.

    He's more than just a a serviceable pg at the moment.

    There are certain aspect in his game that can improve. Take for example his 3pt shooting, which is just getting more reps and trust in his ability to shoot those 3s. next would proabably be to just calm himself, at times he's rushes to much.

    He has all the tools to be a great pg and we are finally seeing it coming together!

  9. #9
    Veteran Dejounte's Avatar
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    One of my favorite pieces of sports journalism in recent memory.

    His analysis of Kawhi’s steady jumps from year to year is exactly what I’ve been saying here in terms of evaluating a course of development for a player. It’s not just how good a player is at that current moment in time- but how good they are in comparison to the month before, and season before. The trajectory of development Kawhi displayed is one mirrored by Dejounte at this very moment.

    Keep this in mind as Lonnie comes back next year, as Keldon returns, as Luka comes back. Leaps year over year are more important than the product you currently see on the court from rookie contract players.

    Dejounte is a ing keeper. He has some very good basketball in front of him.
    What? Are you kidding me? Murray is only as good as the game I saw him in when he had a poor shooting night. That's a stupid concept you have there.

  10. #10
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    He's more than just a a serviceable pg at the moment.

    There are certain aspect in his game that can improve. Take for example his 3pt shooting, which is just getting more reps and trust in his ability to shoot those 3s. next would proabably be to just calm himself, at times he's rushes to much.

    He has all the tools to be a great pg and we are finally seeing it coming together!
    He's not a championship pg is all i'm trying to say, not a good shooter, average decision making, these are two key areas for a great pg, i need to see more, i need to see if he has the feel for the position, can he be a floor general, i'm not sold yet.

  11. #11
    Don't Try. quentin_compson's Avatar
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    "He'll turn down threes from time to time and I’ve got to go to him and let him know that the worst thing that can happen is it doesn’t go in. You know, your family still loves you and you still get a paycheck."
    Didn't Pop use that line with Danny Green as well a couple of years ago?




  12. #12
    Veteran RC_Drunkford's Avatar
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    DJ gonna show out next season. Once he’s a threat from 3 he will be a real problem

  13. #13
    Veteran BG_Spurs_Fan's Avatar
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    He's not a championship pg is all i'm trying to say, not a good shooter, average decision making, these are two key areas for a great pg, i need to see more, i need to see if he has the feel for the position, can he be a floor general, i'm not sold yet.
    Nah floor general type of PGs don't win championships. He doesn't need to be that at all.

  14. #14
    Veteran The Truth #6's Avatar
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    I love his drive and work ethic. He’s definitely improving. I still don’t think he’s really a point guard, but the Spurs seem very invested in him, so hopefully he can learn how to get other players involved. It took Parker years to refine that part, so I see there’s hope.

  15. #15
    Veteran KobesAchilles's Avatar
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    I like that Pop is getting on him for passing up open 3's. That is always the key with some players. Getting that shooters mindset. If Murray can develop a 3 then he is an All-Star. if not, then this is what he is. Not bad but not great either

  16. #16
    Don't stop believin' Dex's Avatar
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    I like that Pop is getting on him for passing up open 3's. That is always the key with some players. Getting that shooters mindset. If Murray can develop a 3 then he is an All-Star. if not, then this is what he is. Not bad but not great either
    Yep, I can't remember if it was you or someone else who pointed it out, but I've started watching and noticing his hesitance to rise up and shoot.

    He can have a big sitting back 6 feet away from him, but instead of squaring up, he tries to drive and works himself into a much lower percentage look.

    He has the shot, he just needs to trust it and learn to start letting it fly.

  17. #17
    Veteran KobesAchilles's Avatar
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    Yep, I can't remember if it was you or someone else who pointed it out, but I've started watching and noticing his hesitance to rise up and shoot.

    He can have a big sitting back 6 feet away from him, but instead of squaring up, he tries to drive and works himself into a much lower percentage look.

    He has the shot, he just needs to trust it and learn to start letting it fly.
    He's kinda turning into a mini-DeRozan on that front and it is starting to scare me. It's one of the reasons why I want Demar gone. Don't poison the young gun

    Myself, I don't care that he misses a 3 pointer, but I do care that he isn't shooting them enough. I loved the way White played in the bubble, and again when he got healthy. He started jacking up like 7 threes a game and I would like for Murray to be up to atleast 5 a game next year. I don't think people understand how easy it is to score when you can shoot the 3. There's already no big men in the paint and guards can't go under screens anymore which just opens up the whole floor. Even his midrange would benefit from hitting 3's

  18. #18
    Believe. GAustex's Avatar
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    If he can shoot 3 better I like him at 2 guard being scorer. Less energy handling and setting things up. Just SCORE!
    Plus others are better decision makers at PG.
    But he played really well last night.
    He’s a 2 guard and could be real good with accurate 3 ball.

  19. #19
    Chopper Ed Helicopter Jones's Avatar
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    Nice post.

    The intangibles that go beyond the X's and O's are what made guys like the Big Three and David all the more valuable to the Spurs organization. Murray brings the culture. It's pretty cool. I have been happily surprised by his development.

  20. #20
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    I think articles like this are great.... if we want to move him these things increase his notoriety among fans of other teams and make it easier for opposing FO's to sell it to their fanbase....and if we keep him it elevates his fandom here...either way it's a win..

  21. #21
    Savvy Veteran spurraider21's Avatar
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    thanks OP, this is good stuff

  22. #22
    Veteran r0drig0lac's Avatar
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    ? according to spurstalk, Murray spent his all free time on instagram

  23. #23
    Still Sporting Ben Davis Allan Rowe vs Wade's Avatar
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    When the Spurs draft a new player, Murray immediately asks the front office for his phone number. Dinner at Murray’s home is an unofficial part of the onboarding process. He goes out of his way to impart lessons, from why it’s O.K. to spend time in the G League early on
    ^-- TBH when I was reading this my brain interpreted it first as:

    He goes out of his way to impart lessons, from why it’s O.K. to spend time on IG
    had to do a double-take

  24. #24
    D up! exstatic's Avatar
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    "He'll turn down threes from time to time and I’ve got to go to him and let him know that the worst thing that can happen is it doesn’t go in. You know, your family still loves you and you still get a paycheck."
    Didn't Pop use that line with Danny Green as well a couple of years ago?



    I think his line to DVerde was “Shut the up!”.

  25. #25
    Veteran tbdog's Avatar
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    I like Murray. I just think he will be our best asset to go.after an all-star big.

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