Securing the Future: Dejounte Murray Commits to Long-Term Journey with the Hawks
On July 6th, Dejounte Murray agreed to a four-year, $120 million contract with the Atlanta Hawks. The Atlanta Hawks made a significant move in the summer when they chose to trade for All-Star guard Dejounte Murray from the San Antonio Spurs. Although there were undoubtedly growing pains during Murray’s first season with the Hawks, the Hawks have decided to retain Murray around on a new contract. The idea was that Murray would provide Trae Young with the kind of backcourt running companion he hadn’t had throughout his stay.
According to Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report and Shams Charania of The Athletic, Murray and the Hawks have reached an agreement on a new four-year contract that would pay him $120 million. A player option is included in the deal’s final year, according to Charania.
The agreement allows Murray and All-Star guard Trae Young to continue playing together in the long run. Young and Murray succeeded in the postseason by challenging Boston to a six-game series and earning the seventh seed. The delicate balance of the Atlanta Hawks’ starting rotation unavoidably shifted with Murray’s addition, and for the better. Murray, who was chosen for his first All-Star game last season, has developed his two-way skills and will work with Trae Young to make a significant impact.
However, it is simpler said than done. Given that the two guards have separate skill sets and experiences from their time in the NBA, it will take a lot of work and perseverance to integrate them into the same system for this pair to succeed.
Building chemistry will naturally take time, and that is a given. The starting guards for the Hawks will have a lot of difficulties this season in figuring out how to work with each other’s differences and similarities, which is an altogether different thing.
On the one side is Murray, a lean, physically intimidating slasher who offers excellent rebounding, outstanding defense, and keen court vision. Murray, a bright youth who spent six seasons with the Spurs, showed significant progress from an early age. But Murray suffered an ACL tear in the preseason of 2018–19, which forced him to miss the regular season. Nevertheless, he would bounce back even better than before, starting all 67 games in the 2020–21 season and averaging 15.7 points, 7.1 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.5 steals. In 68 games played the following year, Murray would have career highs in points per game (21.1), assists (9.2), rebounds (8.3), and steals (2.0).
Trae Young, a point guard, is a phenomenal outside shooter, a deft passer, and a court general with a keen sense of the game. With two All-Star games, an All-NBA Third Team selection, and four seasons in the NBA, Young has developed into a superstar. Young has averaged over 25 points per game since his rookie season (falling to a career-high 29.6 in 2019–20) and over nine assists per game, reaching a career-high last season (9.7). Young also had career-high percentages from the field (46%) and from behind the arc (38%).
Dejounte is, therefore, essential to the future success of the Hawks.
Unveiling the Impact of Dejounte Murray on Atlanta’s Basketball Dynasty
Dejounte Murray’s Dynamic Playmaking Elevates Atlanta’s Scoring Arsenal
Because Nikola Jokic is perhaps the finest offensive engine in the game, when people think of offensive generators, they immediately think of him. Murray, though, also creates offense. In the league, Dejounte’s assist % ranked 25th. In the postseason, Murray scored 20.5 points per game and 23 points per event. An intriguing feature of his game is his ability to create offense down the floor regularly. Murray adds value on the offensive end of the basketball for the Hawks because Atlanta finished sixth in offensive efficiency. Murray succeeds in a heavy pick-and-roll league because he can produce for himself and his teammates. An offensive generator is Dejounte.
Murray’s Defensive Prowess Fortifies Atlanta’s Championship Ambitions
Dejounte Murray excels offensively and also plays good defense. He recorded more steals in 2022 with the Spurs, but he only averaged 1.5 in 2023. Dejounte ranked 82nd overall among the 539 players regarding defensive win shares. He actively defends while gaining deflections and thefts. Even though he was reliable in 2023, he still has to work on becoming the defender he was in 2022. Atlanta’s defense needs much work, so Murray must keep taking the initiative there.
Murray Adds Another Note of Brilliance to Atlanta’s Guard Repertoire
Another guard who can play when Trae needs to relax throughout the game is Dejounte. He understands offensive management, runs pick-and-roll efficiently, and makes accurate throws. With another guard who can score and assist at a high level, Trae will have time to recuperate. He has to be signed because giving Young another solid guard option is crucial.
Redefining Greatness on the Court, Cementing his Legacy in Atlanta’s Basketball Pantheon
The transaction makes sense because Dejounte Murray offers a lot of value to Atlanta. The Hawks could not afford to lose another offensive player this offseason after trading away John Collins.
The Atlanta Hawks and the Utah Jazz have agreed to a trade for seasoned forward Rudy Gay and forward/center John Collins, according to NBA Senior Insider Adrian Wojnarowski. According to Wojnarowski, a well-known source in the basketball world, the transaction is now being completed and will also include a future second-round selection.
Murray and Young also worked well together, and with another season under head coach Quin Snyder, they will only grow better.