New Orleans Pelicans: Should we be concerned about Trey Murphy III?

Trey Murphy III #25 of the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
Trey Murphy III #25 of the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /

Trey Murphy III of the New Orleans Pelicans is a classic example of why you can’t put too much stock in Summer League and preseason numbers.

Every year there is a player who looks like a future All-Star in the preseason, only to disappear when the games get real. This is combination of playing against better talent and fans having unrealistic expectations.

Murphy has been that guy this year for the New Orleans Pelicans, as his hot preseason shooting has disappeared for the most part in the Pelicans atrocious 2-14 start.

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He has taken a back seat to fellow rookie Herbert Jones, who is not only playing more minutes and scoring more points, but has played lockdown defense and is actually shooting a higher percentage from long range.

Murphy is averaging just 4.9 points in 17.4 minutes per game while shooting 32.8 percent from 3-point range, while Jones is getting 6.8 points in 24.8 minutes and hitting 38.5 percent of his long-range shots, a testament to his work with shooting coach Fred Vinson.

Trey Murphy III has been a non-factor so far, but how worried should we be about the rookie’s show start?

New Orleans Pelicans: Trey Murphy III will get better as the season goes on

Nearly all rookies struggle, so the answer to the question of how worried we should be about Murphy is “not very.”

Murphy has all of the tools to thrive on the Pelicans, and he is one of the guys who will benefit most from the return of Zion Williamson, as he is not getting the kinds of looks he will get once this team is at full strength.

TM3 hasn’t been nearly as aggressive in the regular season, which is to be expected from the 17th pick who is still adjusting to the speed of the NBA. Guys close out a lot faster at this level and shots turn from wide-open to contested in the blink of an eye.

Ultimately, Trey Murphy III’s job on this team is going to be to make catch-and-shoot 3-point shots and defend his position. We haven’t seen much of either so far from Murphy, but I am far from ready to give up on a guy who has shown a lot of promise.

I know fans (and Josh Hart apparently) are getting sick of the excuses, but we don’t know what Trey Murphy III is going to be yet and I’ll reserve my judgement for when this team is firing on all cylinders if that ever happens this season.

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