Feb 5, 2013; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Florida Gators center Erik Murphy (33) walks off the court during a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Bud Walton Arena. Arkansas defeated Florida 80-69. Mandatory Credit: Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

2013 NBA Draft: Chicago Bulls Select Florida's Erik Murphy

Mar 16, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Florida Gators forward/center Erik Murphy (33) shoots over Alabama Crimson Tide forward Nick Jacobs (15) during the semifinals of the SEC tournament at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Lindsey-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier in the 2013 NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls took New Mexico’s Tony Snell with the 20th pick, so it became more likely that they would use the 49th pick to pick up a big man. And that is exactly what they did by selecting Florida Gator Erik Murphy.

Murphy is a 6′ 10″, 240 lb. power forward who is actually known for his shooting ability. In fact, Bulls general manager Gar Forman acknowledged his range.

As a stretch four, it will be expected of him to be able to do offensive work both inside the paint and beyond the arc. Murphy should be able to thrive on threes as it was exactly what he did during his tenure as a Florida Gator. Just prior to the announcement of the 49th pick, the Chicago Tribune’s K.C. Johnson tweeted about Murphy’s success as an outside shooter.

His ability to open the floor will be great not only because the Bulls could use the shooting, but also because it would open the paint more, possibly giving Derrick Rose more space to work. Aside from that and his 51.6% field goal percentage, Murphy does not offer much else offensively. He will need to work on becoming successful on the post, but his ability to stretch the floor will certainly do some good.

Murphy will also need to improve on his defense and rebounding, but at the 49th pick, this sharpshooting stretch four seems to be a nice addition. Besides, Joakim Noah will certainly like having another Gator on the roster, and he seems excited to join the Bulls.


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