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Jamal Murray Needs to Improve | Future Starr

FutureStarr

Jamal Murray Needs to Improve

Jamal Murray Needs to Improve

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Denver Nuggets Jamal Murray  NBA  Point guard Toronto Raptors

Murray is one of the NBA's most promising young talents, and his ascension as a starter for the Denver Nuggets has been an amazing development. However, there remains much work to be done in order for Murray to develop into a reliable player.

At 22, he has yet to play in a playoff game and the odds don't look good as we near the end of the regular season. It won't get any easier as the postseason approaches.

Offense

Murray is Denver's star player and leads the Nuggets in points, assists and rebounds per game. However, his efficiency numbers haven't quite lived up to expectations this season with Nikola Jokic out for the remainder of the campaign with a hamstring injury.

That serves as a stark reminder of the impending postseason in which Denver needs Murray to be an elite player if they want to contend for the title. While this year's Nuggets have more depth than their last-round opponents, Murray must still perform at his peak level to lead them all the way to victory in the NBA finals.

As the season comes to a close, we're starting to see more and more of Murray's old style play out. His shot selection has improved, his dribble drive and pick-and-roll skills are back in full force, and his passing game-by-game is becoming more refined.

Malone has been giving Murray more room to run, which has enabled him to regain his rhythm. He's also encouraging Murray to make better decisions when in the paint while keeping up with his intensity level.

Murray's confidence is rising, as he's averaging 21.5 points on 43% shooting from the field and 36% from three in his last seven games. This isn't far off his career high of 21.2 points on 40% shooting from the floor and 50% from 3-point range during 2021-22 (when he missed all of that season due to an ACL tear).

Recently, Murray shared with a rival team's scout his growing comfort with the team and how he hopes his teammates can help him out as he strives to reclaim his spot at the top of Denver's offense. He stressed how essential it is for him to keep his game fresh so he's been given more chances on both ends of the court than ever before.

Defense

In a league filled with star point guards, Murray has managed to elevate his game. His hard work ethic and determination have allowed him to perform at the highest level during playoffs when things get tough.

He has been a major factor in the Denver Nuggets' journey to the conference finals and their two consecutive victories in the first round. Not only does he play at an exceptional offensive level, but he also puts up impressive numbers on defense.

Murray is currently ranked as the fifth-best defender in the NBA, having played well against stars like Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Russell Westbrook and Damian Lillard this season. Though he may not be in contention for Defensive Player of the Year honors, Murray has already established himself as an excellent defender and will only continue to improve throughout the course of this campaign.

Fantasy owners looking for a top point guard at an affordable price should consider adding him. He's likely the top option in daily fantasy leagues, though owners have the freedom to decide whether they want him as their starter or backup.

On Tuesday night, Jamal Murray is expected to suit up for the Nuggets against the Toronto Raptors. Unfortunately, due to a knee injury sustained during Sunday's loss to the Brooklyn Nets, it's likely that he will only play 40 minutes.

The Denver Nuggets are eager for Murray to return to the court soon. The team anticipates him being "fine," so there's a good chance he won't need to be placed on the injury reserve list.

It's especially crucial for the Nuggets, as they have yet to find a long-term replacement for Murray at point guard. Free agent Bruce Brown has played some significant minutes this season for Denver and is expected to be on the roster when Murray returns.

Assists

Since being acquired from the Phoenix Suns during the 2016 NBA trade deadline, Murray has been an invaluable member of the Denver Nuggets. He is a versatile player that can play multiple positions and is also an impressive shooter.

This season, Murray has played an essential role in helping the Nuggets win several key games. His performance against the Toronto Raptors at home was a prime example of this as he had an impressive game against an elite opponent.

Even though he only played 40 minutes, Murray still managed to raise his points and assist totals for the Denver Nuggets. This feat was accomplished despite having trouble shooting and turning over the ball a few times.

Denver needed Murray to provide some offensive spark, and he delivered against the Toronto Raptors by recording a double-double and adding a steal. This was an important game for them as their offense had struggled recently; Murray provided much needed motivation.

He is an integral player for the Denver Nuggets, providing valuable assists that have been instrumental to their success this season. On average, he has scored 20.1 points, grabbed 4.0 rebounds, distributed 5.9 assists, made 1.1 steals and blocked 0.2 shots in 54 appearances this year.

His efficiency has been an issue over the past 10 games, with his slash rate dropping to 39/34/76. Despite this, he remains a reliable player for the Nuggets with averages of 18.8 points, 6.7 assists, 3.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals helping them win their last three games and move up to seventh place in the Western Conference.

After being declared ineligible for Sunday's game against the Brooklyn Nets, Murray is expected to start in Tuesday night's clash against Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena. It promises to be a tight contest between these two teams.

Murray is an outstanding point guard for the Denver Nuggets and widely considered one of the best in the game. He exhibits a strong work ethic and makes for an inspiring leader, while loving to compete and do whatever it takes for his team to win. Murray truly cares about winning for Denver and will do anything it takes for them to come out on top.

Three-point shooting

Jamal Murray's three-point shooting has become an integral part of his game since joining the NBA, where he shot 40.8 percent from three-point range during his only season at Kentucky. Since joining the league, his percentage has improved considerably as a professional shooter. As part of Team Canada, Murray will likely spend more time shooting from deep as he develops into an NBA star.

He's been an impressive three-point shooter in the playoffs, averaging 19 points per game. Last season he made a significant impact on Denver's first-round run and will have another opportunity to shine with veteran point guard Jameer Nelson set to return next season.

Murray is an impressive scorer who can contribute from any point on the floor, but his efficiency has taken a hit due to knee soreness. In his past 10 games, Murray has shot just 39/34/76; however, it's clear that Denver still believes in him and will give him every opportunity to succeed.

Despite his inefficient shooting, Emmanuel Mudiay is still averaging 20.0 points and 6.0 assists per game for Denver this season. With more playing time likely coming when Mudiay takes over on the bench, he should fit in well with Denver's other young players.

The Nuggets will need more three-point shooting from players like Mudiay, Jokic and Murray if they hope to have any chance at making the playoffs. That is why it will be essential for them to get him on the court in meaningful ways during these playoffs.

Murray has struggled from the field in general, so his ability to hit shots from deep will be crucial in these situations. Though he only made one three-pointer in his past eight games, he has shot over 35 percent from deep five times this year.

His shooting in the half-court will be key, as he must take advantage of any open looks to create offense for Denver's offense. Additionally, he's capable of catching and shooting off screens - something which he demonstrated during his time at Kentucky.

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