Well, this has been a whirlwind of a few days. Anyone who claims to have known a week ago that Spurs guard Dejounte Murray would be the hottest name on the market — trade or free agency — is either psychic or not being entirely truthful. Sure, the spectacle of Kyrie Irving continues to draw headlines, and they have some competition with the Knicks clearing as much space as possible to go after Dallas’ Jalen Brunson, making him a hot commodity, but there’s something about the idea of Murray being the “final piece of the puzzle” that has opposing fans oozing for a trade.
Here are the latest rumors surrounding Murray and the Spurs, and this article will be updated as more come out.
The Spurs have upped their asking price, but that hasn’t deterred the Hawks
We already discussed how the Hawks were the first to take a stab at trading for Murray, reportedly offering three future first round picks (likely protected) and forward John Collins, but apparently that wasn’t enough to make the Spurs bite, and as more teams become interested, the Spurs are reportedly upping their asking price to include four first round picks with little-to-no protections, according to LJ Ellis of Spurs Talk.
The Hawks reportedly are still willing to work with that, although it’s sounding more and more like Collins in not the player Spurs want out of the deal. Danilo Gallinari — who has always seemed like he would make a good Spur if he could stay healthy — is the most recent Hawk to be tied to a potential deal, and Kevin Huerter (who has an extension about to kick in), De’Andre Hunter, and Onyeka Okongwu have also been speculated as possible Spurs targets in a deal with Atlanta.
The Mystery East Team
The Hawks seem to be the favorites to land Murray (if the Spurs are actually open to trading him), but they reportedly aren’t the only team trying to negotiate. At one point, the Timberwolves were said to have an “intriguing” package prepared, but nothing more ever came out about what that could be. There were also reports that an unnamed East team is prepared to offer three picks and a “desirable” young player. Who that might be remains a mystery, but one East team that would have such draft capital and has been tied to the rumors is the Knicks.
Longtime, respected NBA reporter Marc Stein recently said in his substack that even if they land Brunson in free agency, the Knicks could still try and trade for Murray. SportsNet New York’s Ian Bagley reports that while he is unsure if the two teams have talked yet, rival execs see Murray and Brunson as a strong fit together. If the Knicks are indeed the mystery team, it’s unclear who that aforementioned “desirable young player” would be — maybe Cam Reddish or RJ Barrett? — but if they are putting together an offer, we’ll to find out eventually what it is.
Do the Spurs actually want to trade Murray?
Here is the ultimate mystery. Clearly the Spurs aren’t desperate to trade Murray and possibly weren’t even planning on it, but when offers come you listen, especially when teams start becoming so desperate they’ll give you whatever you ask for (within league rules, of course).
That being said, Gregg Popovich is reportedly the one who will have the final say if Murray is traded or not. Trading him would mean the Spurs are seriously committing to a rebuild instead of building up from mediocrity, but is that what they actually want? Or course, it’s possible the right trade actually starts moving them up the ladder instead of dropping them to the bottom, but the increasing requests for unprotected first round picks shows if they do take this route, they want every avenue available going forward.
Rumors will keep coming out about this topic until something hapens, whether it’s a completed deal or the Spurs close the doors on trade talks, but in the meantime this will your thread for this topic, and updates will be added to the top as new, credible rumors come out (this does not include Twitter speculation), so stick around!