Virginia forward Trey Murphy III was a highly efficient player in college and now has a strong showing at the 2021 NBA Draft combine working in his favor as he continues to build momentum in the pre-draft process.
Murphy measured in at just over 6-foot-9 in shoes, backing up his listed height, with a 7-foot wingspan and a 38-inch vertical leap. He has the size, the length and athleticism to suggest upside and to go along with his selling points as a shooter and versatile defender.
Murphy addressed the media and revealed he has worked out for the Celtics and Spurs. He has also interviewed with the Sixers, Thunder, Suns, Lakers, Kings, Warriors and Grizzlies.
He listed the teams twice and did not mention the Wizards, who are picking 15th in the first round and could use a 3-and-D wing, but that doesn't mean they won't talk to him in the next month in the leadup to the July 29 draft. Murphy is clearly receiving lots of interest as a projected late first round pick or early second round pick, and because of that feels good about his decision to go pro.
"It was a tough decision because I really love the people at UVA and I enjoyed my time there, but I also felt like it was time for me to start my professional career. I've been getting a lot of good feedback," Murphy said.
Murphy is trying to be the latest on a growing list of successful NBA players from Virginia and the program built by Tony Bennett. Guys like Malcolm Brogdon, Joe Harris, Mike Scott and De'Andre Hunter have all made their mark to different degrees.
Bennett's players tend to shoot well from long range and defend. Murphy follows that track having averaged 11.3 points in his lone season in Charlottesville while shooting 43.3% from three on 4.8 attempts per game. He was also a solid wing defender with the potential to be a very good one at the next level.
"When you play for Virginia, you have to play a role and you have to do it well. Also, you are demanded to play defense. It's the bottom line. If you're going to play for Virginia, you're going to have to play defense," Murphy said.
"The NBA is moving towards people that are long, rangy and can defend. So, it's super important. I feel like there's a professionalism that is something that will translate to the next level. Just being a good human being, too. People really overlook that and it's something that is really important."
Murphy has thought this through, as you can tell by that observation. Over the next month, he will work out for various teams, hoping to solidify his standing as a first round selection.