Keegan Murray on his ‘aggressive’ approach to Year 2

Oct 23, 2023, 10:15 AM

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 11: Keegan Murray #13 of the Sacramento Kings shoots the ball agai...

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

If you watched the Sacramento Kings’ preseason games, you might have noticed a difference in Keegan Murray’s approach.

Murray, who secured All-Rookie First Team honors last season after breaking the NBA’s rookie three-point record, did most of his damage coming off of dribble-hand-offs or spot-up attempts from beyond the arc.

During preseason, Murray scored the basketball in various ways, including driving the lane for poster jams, attacking off-the-dribble for mid-range jumpers, and even drawing fouls while going to the basket.

Sacramento expects Murray to show an uptick in aggression this year, and the Iowa product says he’s ready to do some different things on the court in 2023-24.

“Just be aggressive,” Murray said when asked about his approach to the season following Sunday’s practice session at Golden 1 Center. “I mean, me and [De’Aaron] Fox, we kind of have this thing, who can get dunk of the year this year, so I feel like I have it so far. But, no, it’s just being as aggressive as possible towards the basket. If I get fouled, I get fouled. If I get a dunk, I get a dunk. It’s just the aggressive mindset.”

YouTube video

Murray, who averaged 14.6 points per game on 51 percent shooting from the field over three preseason appearances, credits his new aggressive approach to becoming stronger and having experience under his belt.

“I feel physically stronger, so that plays a part in it,” Murray said of his change in approach. “It’s different in college, I mean in college there’s not guys that big. There’s not that many shot blockers like there are [in the NBA], obviously. I feel like I was more comfortable on the outside oF the three-point line, so I was kind of hesitant to get in the paint, but this year I feel good at all three levels (inside, mid-range, three-point).”

To listen to Murray’s full comments from Sunday’s practice, click ‘play’ on the video that is located within this post.

About Kings forward Keegan Murray

Murray, the Kings’ fourth-overall pick of the 2022 NBA Draft out of Iowa, was a critical piece of last season’s team that made the NBA Playoffs for the first time since 2006.

The 22-year-old finished the regular season with averages of 12.2 points and 4.6 rebounds per game while shooting 45 percent from the field and 41 percent from three-point range over 80 appearances.

It was a record-breaking rookie season for Murray, who topped Donovan Mitchell’s rookie three-point record of 187 made triples. Murray finished the season with 206 made threes–the sixth-most during a single season in Sacramento Kings franchise history.

Murray’s 206 triples led the 2022 rookie class, with the next-closest on the leaderboard being Jabari Smith Jr. and Jaden Ivey, with 120 made triples each.

Among players who attempted at least 400 three-point field goals last season, Murray ranks fifth in three-point field goal percentage (.410). The rookie converted five or more three-point field goals in 10 games this season. No other rookie did so on more than three occasions.

YouTube video

The rookie didn’t have to wait long to make his first NBA Playoff appearance, as Sacramento finished the season with the third-best record in the Western Conference and played a hard-fought seven-game series against the defending champion Golden State Warriors.

After struggling out of the gates, Murray finished the series strong by averaging 14.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 1.0 assists per game while shooting 51 percent from the field and 46 percent from three-point range during Games 4 through 7.

Next Game

Next time, it’s for real.

The Kings will open their 2023-24 regular season on Wednesday night in Salt Lake City, Utah, for a matchup against the Utah Jazz.

Be sure to tune in right here on Sactown Sports 1140 for all of your Kings vs. Jazz coverage, beginning at 4:30 PM PST on Game Night before a 6:00 PM PST tip-off from downtown Salt Lake City.

Sacramento Kings 2023-24 Regular Season Schedule

  • Wednesday, October 25th – Sacramento Kings @ Utah Jazz – 6 PM PST (Season Opener)
  • Friday, October 27th – Sacramento Kings vs. Golden State Warriors – 7 PM PST (Home Opener)
  • Sunday, October 29th – Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Lakers – 6 PM PST
  • Wednesday, November 1st – Sacramento Kings @ Golden State Warriors – 7 PM PST
  • Saturday, November 4th – Sacramento Kings @ Houston Rockets – 5 PM PST
  • Monday, November 6th – Sacramento Kings @ Houston Rockets – 5 PM PST

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