Knicks’ task: Stop former summer target Dejounte Murray

Knicks’ task: Stop former summer target Dejounte Murray

After keeping Donovan Mitchell and the Cavaliers to a season-low 81 points in Sunday’s victory at Madison Square Garden, the Knicks will now aim to shut down Dejounte Murray, another player they might have traded for in the offseason.

The 2022 All-Star guard was acquired by Atlanta from the Spurs in June. On November 2, he scorched the Knicks with 36 points, nine assists, and five steals at Madison Square Garden.

Tom Thibodeau said of Murray before Wednesday’s home game against the Hawks, “I believe it’s his all-around performance.” Clearly, he has developed much over the past few years. In addition to being long, agile, and a great defender, he now possesses shooting ability. Therefore, he gives them the stolen portion of it. He has the ability to flip you over, which places him on the open floor and generates easy buckets for them.

“And the flexibility, the ability to play both on and off the ball, I believe that he and Trae Young compliment each other rather well. Consequently, I believe he has contributed significantly to their team.”

The Knicks considered AJ Griffin before trading the 13th overall selection on draft night to convince the Pistons to assume Kemba Walker’s contract in order to make room for the signing of Jalen Brunson in free agency.

The Hawks picked Griffin, a product of Archbishop Stepinac (White Plains) and former Duke forward, with the No. 16 overall choice in the first round. In 20 games as a rookie for Atlanta, he has averaged 9.7 points per game while shooting 37.6% from 3-point range (13-11).

“I believe AJ Griffin has contributed greatly to their squad. He is an exceptional marksman. “[He] has played really well for them,” remarked Thibodeau. “You are aware that he was on [the Knicks’] draft board. I believe we evaluated a handful of athletes we deemed to be competent. You consider all alternatives. “I think our approach was pretty comprehensive, and we felt comfortable about the decision we made and the road we took.”

 

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