How Did Keegan Murray Go from 29% in College to Breaking Donovan Mitchell’s Record?



by FAIZAN CHAUDHARY

How Did Keegan Murray Go from 29% in College to Breaking Donovan Mitchell’s Record?
© Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

The Sacramento Kings have found a gem in forward Keegan Murray. Fresh off his rookie year, Murray boasts averages of 12.2 points and 4.6 rebounds for the playoff-contending Kings. But what has truly made headlines is his shooting accuracy.

Murray flaunted a formidable 45.5% field goal percentage and a noteworthy 41.1% from behind the arc, averaging 6.3 attempts each game. His contribution was pivotal to the Kings' emergence as the top-rated offense in the NBA, a significant factor propelling them into the playoffs.

Murray Shatters Record

Highlighting his groundbreaking rookie year, Murray broke Donovan Mitchell's 2017-18 record for the highest number of 3-pointers made by a newcomer. Mitchell's 187 threes had been the benchmark until Murray's game against the Portland Trail Blazers on March 29.

It was during this face-off that Murray netted his 188th three of the season. In an introspective chat with Mark Medina of Sportskeeda, Murray delved into the weight of his accomplishment. "The gravity of my feat truly dawned on me in the offseason," he mused.

"Reflecting on my 29% 3-point shooting during my freshman year at the University of Iowa makes this accolade even more momentous." During his initial college year, Murray wasn’t as perimeter-focused, with a modest average of 7.2 points on 50.6% shooting and minimal 3-point attempts.

But the subsequent year witnessed a dramatic transformation. He surged to 23.5 points on 55.4% shooting, with a 39.8% success rate from downtown on 4.7 attempts each game. This metamorphosis set the stage for his sterling NBA debut.

In total, Murray drained 206 threes during his inaugural NBA season. He stood 12th overall in 3-pointers made and a commendable 7th among those maintaining at least a 40% success rate from the 3-point territory. Murray's exceptional shooting prowess, coupled with his impressive 6'8" stature, places him firmly on the radar of many franchises.

As he gears up for his sophomore year, the synergy between his impeccable shooting and the playmaking dynamism of teammates Domantas Sabonis and De'Aaron Fox hints at even brighter prospects. With a year of NBA action behind him, Murray is poised to elevate his game further, continuing to be a formidable presence on the court.