Scouting Report: Dejounte Murray

Dejounte Murray is a point guard from the University of Washington. Murray is 6’5 and has a wingspan of 6’11. For the year, he averaged, 33.5 minutes per game, 16.1 points per game, 6.0 rebounds per game, 4.4 assists per game, 1.8 steals per game, while shooting 41.6% from the field, and 28.8% from three. 

Pros:

  • Excellent NBA size and length
  • Incredible athleticism
  • Mature for his age
  • Disciplined player
  • Feeds off the crowd
  • Can play either guard position
  • Explosive first step
  • One of the best ball handlers in the country
  • Great finisher at the rim
  • Pick-and-roll potential
  • Defensive potential
  • Excellent rebounder

Cons:

  • Strength
  • Court vision
  • Can be selfish on offense
  • Turnover prone
  • Shooting consistency
  • Shooting form
  • Needs to get to the line more often
  • Mediocre free throw shooter

Overall:

Dejounte Murray was expected to be at Washington for at least two years, but after a great first year in school, he decided to opt into the draft. Murray is still extremely raw, but his ability to score and defend will make him one of the most polarizing prospects in the draft.

Murray has a natural feel for the offensive side of the ball. He possess an electric first step, one which allows for him to blow by many defenders to get to the basket for an easy score. Murray does need to focus on getting more contact on drives, if he wants continued success at the next level. If his speed is not enough to get by defenders, Murray is one of the best ball handlers in the country. His crossover will break ankles at the next level. Murray has decent form on his jumper, but his consistency from mid-range changes game to game. Stepping further out to three point range, Murray is not a good three point shooter. He shot below 30% for his only season, and likely with more work on his shooting mechanics this could improve, but form is one of the most difficult things to fix going into the next level. Murray also feeds off the crowd. If they are loud, he harnesses this into his game, and becomes even more deadly. When looking at him for the next level, Murray can play either guard position, but his point guard skills are raw. His vision is sub par, as Murray tends to focus on how to score for himself, instead of surveying the court for an easy opportunity for his teammates. Murray can become turnover prone, as he will try to do too much.

The defensive potential for Murray is off the charts. Murray is already one of the best defensive guards in the country, with the potential to be a lock down defender at the next level. His combination of speed, length, and awareness combine to create the desired defender every team is looking for. His length helps make him a great perimeter defender, as players struggle to get around him, while he contests many of their jumpers. In the paint, Murray will need to add some weight, so he does not get pushed around by the bigger guards of the league. He is a good rebounder as well, but again, Murray’s lack of strength might cost him his numbers at the next level.

As an overall player, Murray is a great scorer and defender, with the potential to be a devastating two-way player with further development. As of right now, I would not trust him to be the lead guard of an NBA team, as he will need a year or two of development to be trusted to lead a team’s offense. On defense, Murray has all the intangibles to transfer to the next level and be an elite defender, but it will all depend if he can add more strength to not get bullied by the bigger two guards at the next level. When it comes to draft range, Murray is projected from 10-35 depending on what mock you are looking at. The earliest you would see Murray going is Milwaukee, who are desperate for another scorer. With Giannis Antetokounmpo looking to take over point guard duties, Milwaukee could use the scoring ability of Murray off the bench, until he develops the needed skills to lead the team, and move Antetokounmpo back to a forward position. Teams like Memphis, Philadelphia, Chicago, Orlando, and Detroit should also have interest to add competition and scoring to their rosters.

Pro Comparison: Shaun Livingston

Livingston and Murray share quite a few similarities. Both players need or needed to add strength to their bodies to continue their success on the defensive side of the ball, while their offensive games were erratic.

On offense, Murray and Livingston both have an electric ball handling ability, one which can throw off almost any defender. Both excel at attacking the rim, where their long arms drop the ball in the basket with ease. Livingston has worked greatly on his mid-range game, but almost completely abandoned any three game. Murray needs to improve on his mid-range game to be successful at the next level, and not end up like the next Michael Carter Williams. Livingston was a much better passer coming into the league, something Murray needs to drastically improve on to be a successful point guard at the next level.

Defensively, Livingston and Murray both have an elite combination of awareness and length. Both players are excellent perimeter and on-ball defenders. Livingston has added the needed strength to not have to worry about getting bullied by bigger opposing guards. In terms of rebounding, Livingston and Murray use their great leaping ability and wingspan to scoop up rebounds, and just as quickly lead the attack in transition.

Livingston had a lot of hope to be a game changer at the next level, but a knee injury ended those lofty expectations. Murray’s potential right now looks to be a good sixth man type player. If he can improve his shooting consistency, Murray could be one of the best offensive guards  in the league. As long as Murray adds some strength to his frame, Murray’s defensive attributes fair well to transition into the next level, and be a dominant defender.

By: Mac Crowe, @Mac_Truck17

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