Nuggets top draft pick Jamal Murray expects to shoot the ball – he was, after all, the leading scorer on a University of Kentucky team that won 27 games last season – but he also expects to handle the ball and help spread the ball for Denver’s other young talent.
Les Shapiro of Afternoon Drive on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 spoke with Murray the day he arrived in Denver to find out just what the young guard expects his role to be now that he’s in the NBA.
“Someone who can spread the floor, shoot the ball well, playmaker as well alongside [Emmanuel] Mudiay and [Gary] Harris” Murray says.
The key question when the season starts up is how well the sharp-shooting Murray can gel with his backcourt counterparts and how they will utilize his abilities to play the point guard position as well. It will be a matter of trust, Murray says.
“Having trust in your point guard, and I trust Mudiay in the plays he makes. He is very crafty, strong, physical so I think I can help with my shooting playing the two guard, then obviously when they allow me to play the point, I can change it up a bit.”
Murray was highly coveted by Denver to add range to their offense. At Kentucky he shot 40 percent from 3-point range on 277 attempts. But Murray is not all about shooting, as he provides an explanation when asked what makes him so unique.
“I am a big guard, quick release, can post up, slow pace down, speed it up, and adapt to my environment very quickly,” Murray says.
It’s that versatility that had him third on the Nuggets draft board behind No. 1 and 2 overall picks Ben Simmons and Brandon Ingram, and why the Nuggets were so thrilled to get him at No. 7. His head coach at Kentucky, John Calipari, said he believed Murray should have been the top selection in the draft. Murray humbly agrees.
“Yeah, I believe I’m the best talent in the draft. Now I’m going to go prove it – I’ve got great teammates and a great organization … It’s going to be fun. It’s going to be a good year.”
To listen to the complete interview click on the podcast below…