NBA Draft Profile: Keegan Murray Brings Two-way Versatility Spurs Crave

Iowa v Penn State
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No two players share the exact same path to relevancy, and it’s safe to say that Iowa forward Keegan Murray has taken the road less traveled. A 6-foot-8 forward who can bang in the post or rain jumpers from the perimeter, Murray’s route to the NBA Draft hasn’t always been in plain view. The son of a four-year Iowa starter, Murray and his twin brother spent a year at prep school before trying to double-down on their family’s Hawkeyes legacy.

Stuck on the back-end of Iowa’s rotation behind last season’s Naismith Player of the Year in Luka Garza and San Antonio Spurs draftee Joe Wieskamp, Murray spent his freshman year out of the limelight. But when Garza and Wieskamp left college basketball behind to pursue pro careers, Murray emerged as one of the most dominant players in the NCAA.

From his first year to his second, Murray’s scoring output skyrocketed by more than 16 points per game. In fact, his 23.5 points per game are tied for the third-most amongst D-1 players. Decisive in his actions and deceptive in his strength, Murray scores using an appealing shot profile compiled largely of paint buckets and 3-pointers that allows him to exploit gaps in his opponent’s defense.

Considered a late-bloomer at 21-years-old, Murray is one of the more intriguing prospects in this year’s class. The forward is far from the most explosive athlete in the class and may not be gaudy like some of his competition, but he’ll enter the league with a proven work ethic and baseline of skills that any team will appreciate.

There’s a good case to be made that San Antonio, barreling toward the late-lottery with a blatant gap in their frontcourt, is a perfect fit for the unconventional, modern forward.