There's a few things the New York Knicks have lacked for years. One is solid point guard play and another is strong defensive play. Toure Murry is a young converted shooting guard playing point guard. He's still raw but he has a lot of tools to work with and is still raw with room to develop. Between Murry's youth and the fact that Phil Jackson's triangle offense doesn't require an elite point guard, the Knicks need to re-sign Murry.
Toure Murry caught the eyes of New York Knicks fans and brass with his play during the summer league. He was then invited to to training camp with the Knicks but did not accept right away after earning the interest of the Miami Heat and others. Surprisingly, after the Knicks had brought in a third point guard (Raymond Felton, Pablo Prigioni, Beno Udrih) Murry decided to accept his invite.
Despite the tight competition, Murry made the squad and showed flashes during his inconsistent time on the court. Although his offensive game clearly needs to evolve Murry's court vision, developing point guard skills and obvious defensive abilities made him a fan favorite.
Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork reports Murry has garnered interest from other teams around the league.
Combo guard Toure' Murry, coming off his rookie season, is said to be on the radar of a handful of teams — Chicago and Golden State among them — that are hoping the shift in power in New York from the Knicks' previous administration to Phil Jackson leads to Murry becoming an unrestricted free agent.
ESPNNewYork.com reported last week that the Brooklyn Nets also have interest in Murry.
The mere fact that the Bulls, Warriors and Nets have interest in Murry should tell Jackson he too needs to pay attention to the young guard. This season the Knicks had Murry under contract for $490,180. However, he'll be a free agent once the season is over and the signing period begins. That being said, Begley also adds some interesting information about Murry's free agent status.
The Knicks can make Murry a restricted free agent and obviously increase their chances of keeping him by extending the Wichita State product a qualifying offer before June 29. In that scenario, New York could match any offer Murry received in free agency.
But if they decline to extend Murry a qualifying offer, he'll become an unrestricted free agent.
That's exactly how the Knicks need to deal with this situation. Ideally, they'd re-sign him to an extremely inexpensive deal and move on. However, the fact they can try to do so with a qualifying offer and make him a restricted free agent if he doesn't accept the offer is a smart move.
Murry is 24 years old, a 6'5" tall point guard who can defend and run the pick and roll. It’s hard to imagine Jackson not liking the thought of what Murry could do in the triangle offense. Jackson's always liked guards who can be physical.
An active defender who knows how to use his long reach, Murry is the best defensive guard on the New York not named Iman Shumpert. He also has a strong handle and attacks the basket with an ability to get to the free throw line. On top of that, he's a good rebounder for his position.
Murry can kill opponents in transition. His biggest flaw has been his jump shot. It needs a lot of work. That being said, there's no reason to believe that can't improve and he has too many other positive qualities to for the Knicks to allow him to walk away. Murry, Shumpert and Tim Hardaway Jr. have shown some great cohesiveness together. That's something the Knicks should be looking to cultivate not eliminate.
It's clear Murry enjoys being in New York. After a poor 2013-14 campaign and Jackson taking over as president, the Knicks will have to re-evaluate their entire roster. When they do so, hopefully Jackson will realize that Murry should be one of the few current Knicks in the team's future plans.Basketball, Iman Shumpert, Miami Heat, NBA, New York, New York Knicks, Phil Jackson, Tim Hardaway Jr., Toure Murry