From Kitchener to NBA playoff history: Jamal Murray’s basketball journey so far
Published Monday, September 28, 2020 11:17PM EDT
KITCHENER -- NBA star Jamal Murray might be out of the 2020 playoffs, but his basketball journey is far from over.
The Denver Nuggets guard had a historic postseason run in “the bubble”, scoring over 26 points a game and putting up multiple 50-point efforts before falling short to the Lebron James-led Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Finals.
Those who have known him though say the success has been no surprise.
“He’s always had this confidence, you mix that with skill and discipline and I think that’s going to take him all the way,” one coach said in 2013. “I’ll go out on a limb right now – this kid is the real deal.”
Murray completed Grade 10 at Grand River Collegiate before transferring to Orangeville Prep Academy for his final two years of high school.
“I just feel I need to be myself, play my own game, and do what I need to do to be successful,” he said in 2013.
The guard took his talents to the highly-regarded basketball program at University of Kentucky and averaged 20 points.
After that season ended short of the championship, Murray declared for the NBA draft in 2016.
“I came here with a goal to improve myself and I cherish every moment on the court,” he said at the time.
Not long after, he heard NBA Commissioner Adam Silver call his name on stage at draft night.
“With the seventh pick in the 2016 NBA Draft, the Denver Nuggest select Jamal Murray from Kitchener, Canada and the University of Kentucky,” he said.
Just four years later Murray made his historic playoff run, and while he’s always had his hometown’s attention, the world has now been put on notice about the player from Kitchener.