One of college basketball's breakout stars from the 2021-22 campaign found his next home when the Sacramento Kings selected Iowa forward Keegan Murray with the No. 4 overall pick of the 2022 NBA draft Thursday.
Bleacher Report Draft Expert Jonathan Wasserman's Scouting Report
Player: Keegan Murray
Pro Comparison: T.J. Warren
Scouting Report: The most productive scorer among first-round prospects, Murray now mixes off-ball instincts with more on-ball skill. If he continues to make strides as a shooter, he should be an easy fit thanks to his knack for finishing in transition, off cuts and on post-ups.
Even the most optimistic Hawkeyes fans likely didn't see Murray developing into such an early first-round pick when he arrived in college as an unheralded 3-star prospect in the 2020 recruiting class, per 247Sports' composite rankings.
The 21-year-old was a modest contributor as a freshman but turned into one of the nation's best players as a sophomore when he was named a consensus All-American, Big Ten tournament MVP and All-Big Ten first team selection while averaging 23.5 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and 1.3 steals per game and hitting 55.4 percent of his shots from the field and 39.8 percent of his triples.
Here is how he will fit in with Sacramento's roster:
De'Aaron Fox, PG: $32.6M (2026)
Harrison Barnes, SF: $21.3M (2023)
Domantas Sabonis, PF: $18.7M (2024)
Richaun Holmes, C: $11.6M (2025)
Justin Holiday, SF: $6M (2023)
Davion Mitchell, PG: $5.2M (2025)
Maurice Harkless, SF: $4.5M (2023)
Terence Davis, SG: $4M (2023)
Alex Len, C: $3.8M (2023)
Trey Lyles, PF: $2.6M (2023)
Chimezie Metu, PF: $1.5M (2023)
Keegan Murray, PF (rookie-scale contract)
Jeremy Lamb, SG: UFA
Josh Jackson, SG: UFA
Donte DiVincenzo, SG: RFA
Damian Jones, C: UFA
Neemias Queta, C: RFA
There is plenty to like about Murray's game that should help him become a major part of Sacramento's rotation during his rookie season.
He can defend multiple positions on one end, which provides lineup versatility from his first day in the league. He can also score in a variety of ways, whether he is hitting from outside, working in post moves or coming off pick-and-rolls and pick-and-pops as an offensive threat.
If Murray lives up to expectations, he could challenge for Rookie of the Year while leading the Kings in the future.
He joins a team with a number of potential impact pieces, including De'Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, that is looking to finally become a postseason threat after missing the playoffs the last 16 seasons.
It may take more than the addition of Murray, but he provides a reason for optimism for a Kings franchise that could use some.