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Dejounte Murray, 6’5″ Guard, Washington, 19 Years Old
Dejounte Murray, a four start recruit from Rainier Beach High School in Seattle, Washington, decided to depart the University of Washington after just one season. He was a key cog in a surprising season for the Huskies. In his one year in the Purple and Gold, he averaged 16.1 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game. He is a bouncy, crafty, athletic 170 pound combo guard. Murray shot 41.6% from the field, 28.8% from three-point range, and 66.3% from the free throw line. He was also named to the 2nd team All-Pac 12 team and 1st team All-Pac 12 Freshman team. Murray is a very polarizing prospect who’s draft range is late lottery to early second round.
Murray’s game is very unique. He attacks the basket with great change of direction quickness and has a full repertoire once he arrives at the hoop. He can go into defenders and finish and his floater game is special. He often uses changes of speed and unusual angles to get his floaters off against bigger defenders. His jumpshot has potential as shown by his three-point accuracy improving from 22% in non-conference play to 35% in conference play. Murray also exhibits a great vision in the open court and is a good passer. He is one of the best ball handlers in this year’s draft class.
On the other end of the court, he has all the makings of a good defender. He is quick in his stance and his 6’5″ frame and 6′ 9.5″ wing span bode well for a modern NBA point guard. His six rebounds per game also display his athleticism and intuition. The athleticism also showed throughout the season and in the pre-draft process.
The two biggest problems with his game at the moment are his strength and his consistency. He is very slight at 170 and that can cause a variety of problems. When he attacks the cup, he cannot finish through the contact and this was just against college level players. Now that he will be guarding NBA guards, he will get backed on the block and bullied at times. The strength will come with more time in the weight room. And Murray is very inconsistent throughout his game. The jumpsuit wains and he struggled mightily with his pull-up. Defensively, he also showed flashes but he would not give full effort all the time. The inconsistency also flashes in his decision making where he can make a spectacular pass one possession and the next he is throwing a lazy pass.
Murray needs time and that is why he is a perfect candidate for the back end of the first round. He surprised many by signing an agent immediately after school, but the decision is a good one if he lands in the first round and gets guaranteed money. He has the tools that aren’t coachable, but he needs to be more confident. He could refine his jump shot.
NBA Player Comparision
The obvious comparison is for Murray is Jamal Crawford. Crawford grew up mentoring him in the Seattle area and you can see that in Murray’s game. His ceiling is a starting point guard in the league but I believe he will be more of a third-guard in the rotation, who can carry a second-unit with his scoring in the Crawford mold.