Summer League basketball tips off for the Spurs tonight in Salt Lake City as Dejounte Murray leads the silver and black in an offseason showdown against the Utah Jazz. Rotation players Davis Bertans and Bryn Forbes will also see action at the Utah Summer League, along with recent draft picks Derrick White and Jaron Blossomgame.
“Last year I came in here and I was trying to learn the offense, and just learn how they do things over here,” Murray told reporters prior to departing for Utah. “I didn’t know. I was just an outsider looking in. Now I’m a part of this family and I know what to do, so now I’m leading.”
After Spurs icon Tony Parker went down with a ruptured quad tendon, Murray was an active postseason contributor for San Antonio, making crunch time plays against the Houston Rockets while maturing before our eyes. The twenty-year-old point guard also showed flashes of basketball brilliance versus the Golden State Warriors, one of the few silver linings for Spurs enthusiasts in a lopsided Western Conference Finals.
With Parker targeting a January return, Murray should see plenty of minutes at the point next season, complimenting Patty Mills who reportedly agreed to a four year, $50 million contract with the Spurs at the start of free agency. Gunners Bertans and Forbes provide Murray with polished offensive options as he continues to master the Spurs offense in the looser settings of Summer League play.
Obsessive Alamo City hoops heads will get a sneak peek at promising rookies White and Blossomgame, who will debut for the Spurs in Utah. White’s challenging journey to the NBA, which embarked in Division II, suggests strong maturity for a first-year player. Blossomgame, who already possesses the best last name in franchise history, is a confident player with a solid skill set, that wants to contribute now.
“My versatility, offensively and defensively,” said Blossomgame after practice over the weekend, describing his strengths. “Being able to guard, 1’s, 2’s, 3’s, and 4’s, and switching out on all types of screens. On the offensive end, just being able to stretch the floor and shoot corner threes. Make good decisions with the basketball and play on all three levels of the game, at the free throw line. Just be active. Be a player that can come in and help right away.”
Spurs Utah Summer League Schedule:
Monday, July 3, Spurs vs. Jazz, 8 PM, NBATV
Wednesday, July 5, Celtics vs. Spurs, 6 PM, NBATV
Thursday, July 6, 76ers vs. Spurs, 6 PM, NBATV