Trade rumors have been swirling around former San Antonio Spurs guard Dejounte Murray this season. The Atlanta Hawks are off to a 14-21 record and are on the outside of the Eastern Conference playoff race, leading many to think they may tear down their roster. It appears the Spurs may have interest in a reunion, if Murray is available.
Tuesday on FanDuel TV, Shams Charania reported that the Spurs have “a level of exploratory interest” in re-acquiring the 27-year-old guard.
"Dejounte Murray is trade eligible starting today...One team that has a level of exploratory interest I'm told, is his former team, the San Antonio Spurs."@ShamsCharania on Dejounte Murray's current situation.— Run It Back (@RunItBackFDTV) January 9, 2024
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Charania cited the Spurs stable of draft assets and young players that could be used to acquire Murray. He also said that San Antonio is taking a “very patient approach” to their roster-building process. With Victor Wembanyama on the team, they have a runway to pick and choose the right deal for them.
The breakup between the Spurs and Murray has been a well-documented one. Murray took a shot at the Spurs on social media shortly after the trade, and has spoken candidly about his frustrations during his time in San Antonio.
If Murray would welcome a return to the Spurs, he would immediately give them something they’ve been lacking – guard play. He’s averaging 20.9 points, 5 assists and 1.4 steals while shooting 46.7% from the field, 38.4% from deep and 80.7% from the line. Murray is a strong defensive guard at 6-foot-5, and provides playmaking and shot-creation. It’s hard to poke holes in Murray’s ability or fit with the roster.
Murray recently signed a 4-year, $120 million extension with the Hawks. His cap hit this season is just over $18 million, and is set to make just under $25 million next season. If the Spurs wanted to make a deal, they could easily get to his number with expiring contracts like Doug McDermott, Devonte’ Graham and Cedi Osman. A trade for Murray would be more than a rental. If he’s committed to San Antonio, they would have him under contract through the 2027-2028 season.
If San Antonio really wants to make a run at Murray, they’ll have other teams to compete with. It’s been rumored that the Los Angeles Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat have interest in the guard. The Spurs can likely put together a better trade package than those contenders due to their plethora of draft picks and young talent. The question is: do they want to spend those assets on Murray?
The NBA trade deadline is on Thursday, February 8th. Many have thought the Spurs to be sellers this year, but if Charania’s report is true, they may be looking to buy for the right player.