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This year’s San Antonio Spurs are strangely unrecognizable

So many of the things we used to take for granted about the Spurs are missing from the current squad.

San Antonio Spurs v Philadelphia 76ers Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Even though the Spurs are largely the same team they were last year, they just aren’t playing like the team from last season -- and certainly not the team we’ve known for so long. In episode #45 of the Superfluous Poppycock podcast, Charlie Thaddeus and I discuss the things we’re seeing from the Spurs that we’re not used to — and the things we’ve been used to that are conspicuously absent.

We discuss the team’s current lack of leadership and lack of cohesion. The group is made of a lot of individual pieces that each seem like good pieces to have, but don’t fit together into a picture that makes sense. We talk about Dejounte Murray’s finishing at the rim (or more accurately, his inability to score at the rim) as well as the team’s difficulty with capitalizing on fast break situations, and what’s just an overall inability to capitalize on opportunities. For a team with a margin for error as slim this as this one, mistakes like the ones they have in transition end up proving critical.

We also discuss Patty Mills’ career year and how bizarre it was to watch another team throw resources and energy around trying to slow him down, as the Los Angeles Lakers did on Monday night. Then we take on the following question, “Who is the best defender on the Spurs?” before taking a quick moment to lament the idea that Marco Belinelli has gone from being a hilarious, mercurial trickster to being an unfortunate reminder that it’s all fun and games until you team goes on an 8-game losing streak to start the season.

(Catch every episode by clicking “Subscribe” and choosing iTunes, Stitcher or Spotify in the player below.)