The Spurs were hit with the injury bug at the beginning of the season, which left their point guard role in question. Dejounte Murray was slated to be the starter, but Bryn Forbes and Derrick White have picked up that role this season. They are secondary options on a team that features DeMar DeRozan and LaMarcus Aldridge, and filling around those options has been tough for San Antonio. Rudy Gay was a bench player last season, but has found himself as the starting small forward this season. Gay is putting together a pretty strong year from where we projected him at, and is a secondary scoring option behind the two studs. We haven’t seen much of Pau Gasol due to injury, which has left Davis Bertans starting at power forward, while Aldridge moved over to center. This could change with Gasol’s return later in the season.
Well it took long enough, San Antonio finally traded Kawhi Leonard out of town, and he even went into another country. We hardly saw Leonard last season, so it will not be a huge surprise for fantasy production in San Antonio. The trade for DeMar DeRozan adds a high usage piece to the table, and we are all going to wait to see how Pop uses him. DeRozan started to open up from three last year, which was always a criticism of his, but overall is a mid-range player. We should expect to see DeRozan carry on his usual production, even in a San Antonio system that is reliant on spreading the ball around.
LaMarcus Aldridge is going to see a small hit given he was the only one to see a major usage rate last season. Aldridge and DeRozan are similar players where they abuse the mid-range. With the modern day NBA getting away from that, the Spurs are going to rely on stout defense. Leonard does leave a gap at small forward, and the Spurs already lost Kyle Anderson. Right now Rudy Gay and Marco Belinelli are the only listed small forwards. There is a potential fix for this if DeRozan can play some small forward, as Bryn Forbes looks like the new guard Pop wants to start working into the lineup. Dejounte Murray is looking to be the point guard of the future for the Spurs, but Pop does not always rely on him for 30+ minutes a game. Patty Mills and Manu Ginobili will still work in their time, and that can hurt Murray’s fantasy upside. Pau Gasol is a dinosaur in this league, and Jakob Poeltl is likely going to be the one who surpasses him at some point. He came over in the Kawhi deal, and was one of the better bench players for Toronto.