Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Flip Murray Update

In the course of one season I went from the greatest critic of signing Flip Murray to the strongest advocate for the value of his contributions. I don't expect him to repeat last season's strong performance but allowed to do what he does well he could be a useful contributor for a team in need of bench scoring.

In perhaps not the strongest endorsement of my basketball acuity, the Memphis Grizzlies may agree with me. Ronald Tillery writes that Tarance Kinsey may have gone to Turkey because he suspected that Memphis plan to sign Murray:
Kinsey bolted instead of waiting out a potential Grizzlies deal as the franchise considered other options. My sense is the Griz prefer Ronald "Flip" Murray and had Kinsey as a second option.

Murray, though, won't come for the minimum salary after having several productive seasons. He's an unrestricted free agent with the Atlanta Hawks, who are stalling -- much like they did with Josh Smith - and likely will react to Murray finding an offer.

With Murray sitting as the best of the rest among combo guards in free agency, the Griz appear willing to wait out the Murray situation in hopes that a) his price tag falls with his options and b) that he'll be more inclined to not give the Hawks an opportunity after feeling disrespected by their inactivity.
I'm skeptical that the Hawks are "stalling" with Murray. I think he's been replaced by Jamal Crawford and Jeff Teague. Barring a significant injury or the unexpected decision to send Teague to the D-League for the duration of the 2009-10 season, there aren't any minutes for Murray in Atlanta.

I certainly wouldn't begrudge Murray for holding firm for either more money or more years from any and all interested teams. As long as he keeps himself in shape he's not a player who will need a lot of time to settle in with a team. There's little finesse or reliance on 5-on-5 tactics to do with the good parts of his game. He plays hard, gets the better of the opponents he can dominate physically, and struggles against those he can't.

1 comment:

rbubp said...

At this point I think it's best to let Flip move on rather than keep him. If he stays doesn't it mean virtually no playing time for Jeff Teague? We have seen that show before.