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NBA Summer League 2022 MVP: Kings' Keegan Murray Wins Coveted Award

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJuly 18, 2022

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Sacramento Kings forward Keegan Murray was named MVP of the Las Vegas Summer League:

NBA Communications @NBAPR

Sacramento Kings forward Keegan Murray has been named the Most Valuable Player of NBA 2K23 Summer League 2022. <br><br>Murray averaged 23.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.3 steals while shooting 50.0% from the field and 40.0% from three-point range in four games in Las Vegas. <a href="https://t.co/mTuBltv7Eo">pic.twitter.com/mTuBltv7Eo</a>

The No. 4 overall pick in the 2022 draft ranked fourth among all players in the Las Vegas Summer League with his average of 23.3 points per game. He also led the California Summer League with 19.7 points per game in three appearances.

Murray helped the Kings finish with a 6-2 record across the two summer-league competitions.

ESPN's Kevin Pelton rated him as the top player through the three summer leagues:

Kevin Pelton @kpelton

Final leaders in my wins above replacement player (WARP) metric across all three of this year's summer leagues. <a href="https://t.co/sKWNC9eQiI">pic.twitter.com/sKWNC9eQiI</a>

There was seemingly a consensus heading into last month's draft that the class featured a clear top three of Paolo Banchero, Chet Holmgren and Jabari Smith before a drop-off. However, Murray showed over the past couple of weeks that he could be the best of the group.

"Oh, my God, that dude is good," Kings guard Davion Mitchell said of Murray, per Marc J. Spears of AndScape. "He's efficient. He plays the right way. He tries on defense. He just needs to talk a little bit more, but that will come along as he gets more comfortable with us."

The recent production continues an impressive ascent over the past year for the Iowa product.

Murray averaged just 7.2 points per game as a freshman in 2020-21, mostly coming off the bench for the Hawkeyes. He saw an increased role in 2021-22 and came through with 23.5 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game, shooting 39.8 percent from three-point range.

He is now the second straight Kings player to earn a Summer League MVP award, following Mitchell after the guard was named co-MVP in 2021 alongside Cameron Thomas.

Damian Lillard, John Wall and Lonzo Ball are among the other notable players who have won the Summer League MVP award in past seasons.

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