Keegan Murray is a sophomore from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The First Team All-American led the Iowa Hawkeyes to a Big Ten Tournament Championship and now has his sights set on a high spot in the draft lottery.
Keegan Murray 2022 NBA Draft Profile
A three-star recruit coming out of DME Academy in Daytona Beach, Florida, Murray committed to Iowa and returned to his home state. The 6’8’ forward had a strong rookie campaign, making the Big Ten All-Freshman team in 2021. Murray averaged 7.2 points and 5.1 rebounds in his reserve role for the Hawkeyes.
The 2021-22 season saw Murray emerge as a star in the Big Ten Conference. Now a starter playing just under 32 minutes per game, his stats exploded to new heights. Murray led Iowa in points (23.5), rebounds (8.7), and blocks (1.9) per game. His play was good enough to warrant First Team All-Big Ten honors. Murray continued his incredible play in the Big Ten Tournament, leading the Hawkeyes to victory in the championship game and earning the tournament’s MVP award in the process.
Although the NCAA Tournament was a disappointment for Murray and the Hawkeyes, the forward was recognized as a First Team All-American and won the Karl Malone Award as the nation’s best power forward.
Murray’s versatility is one of his biggest strengths. The athletic four shoots well enough from deep to play on the wing if needed and his 6’11” wingspan gives him enormous potential as a shot blocker. Murray does a little bit of everything on the court, averaging multiple assists, steals, and blocks per game on top of his scoring and rebounding. He is a solid offensive rebounder that never stops working on the glass. His touch at the rim is nice, whether it be finishing in transition or off of a smooth cut to the basket. Murray’s handle allows him to push the fast break himself after grabbing a defensive board.
Defensively, Murray looks to match up well with the power forwards in the league. His versatility should allow him to stay in front of ball handlers on a switch and his aforementioned wingspan can help him recover when beat and still make plays at the rim.
While Murray is an efficient and capable scorer, he needs to improve on his shot creation in the halfcourt. Iowa runs a motion offense, which allowed Murray to get open looks from off-ball action like cuts and screens. Although he has solid post moves, if Murray can upgrade his handle and first step, he’ll become a three-level scorer that will be hard to stop. Staying in the half-court offense, Murray needs to work on his mid-range pull up. This is an inconsistent part of his game currently and would be a really useful tool for him going forward.
For a big man, Murray is a solid passer and keeps the ball moving offensively. However, he isn’t exactly a playmaker.
There are several players that come to mind when watching game tape on Murray. His love for driving with his left hand reminds me of Thaddeus Young, another combination three/four with a ton of athletic ability but light on offensive polish. A more recent comparison would be Otto Porter. If Murray’s offensive game continues to blossom, he could very well fit into the mold of a Tobias Harris or Lamar Odom. Murray could one day be a top scoring option for a contender, possibly an occasional All-Star.
2022 NBA Draft Projection
Murray is a top-five prospect and should be one of the first players taken in this year’s draft.