Toure’ Murry is set to hit free agency in July, and even though he made barely a ripple for the Knicks this season after making the team out of training camp, he’s drawing interest from the Bulls, Warriors and Nets, among others, reports Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com. Murry would become a restricted free agent if the Knicks extend a qualifying offer worth more than $1MM, about $200K more than he would make on the minimum salary next season. Rival suitors are hoping Knicks president Phil Jackson, who wasn’t around when the team signed Murry and elected to keep him past the leaguewide guarantee date, finds the qualifying offer too high and allows Murry to become an unrestricted free agent, Begley notes.
Murry averaged 2.7 points in 7.3 minutes per game in 51 appearances this past season, his first in the NBA after going undrafted out of Wichita State in 2012. The guard spent his first year after turning pro in the D-League, notching just 8.3 PPG in 23.4 MPG for the Rockets affiliate. Still, Murry beat out a handful of veterans with NBA experience in Knicks training camp this fall as owner James Dolan pushed for more youth on the team. The Knicks chose in December to retain Murry instead of Chris Smith, the brother of J.R. Smith, angering the former Sixth Man of the Year.
The Bernie Lee client took home the rookie minimum salary of $490,180 this year, making him cheaper than veteran options, but his minimum would be $816,482 next season, a relatively significant jump. Chicago, Golden State and Brooklyn no doubt have Murry fairly low on their wish lists, but even a modicum of interest at this point in the offseason indicates that there’s a chance he’ll make more than the minimum next season. It appears at least that, unlike this past summer, he’ll receive offers for guaranteed salary. There’s probably a decent chance he’ll become sign-and-trade fodder should the Knicks attempt to construct a larger swap with one of the teams that likes his game.