Grade the trade: Pelicans land Dejounte Murray in shocking blockbuster

The Pelicans made a shocking trade for Dejounte Murray on June 28.
New Orleans Pelicans, Dejounte Murray
New Orleans Pelicans, Dejounte Murray / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Pelicans lead executive David Griffin said changes were coming (subscription required) after his team was swept in the first round of the playoffs. Most believed Brandon Ingram would be traded, but Griffin made a different shocking move to start this offseason.

New Orleans was rumored to be interested in a star guard. Most believed it would BI traded for one, but Griffin was able to acquire Dejounte Murray without giving up his All-Star forward.

It cost the Pelicans two first-round draft picks and two role players, according to Adrian Wojnarowski. Here is a look at the full details of the trade and how the franchises fared in the deal.

Full details of the Pelicans trading for Dejounte Murray

The Hawks wanted to split up their backcourt. They gave up three first-round picks to acquire Murray in 2022. Atlanta dreamed of him forming an unstoppable duo with Trae Young, but things never worked out. The Hawks missed the playoffs in 2024 and needed to shake things up.

New Orleans gave up two first-round draft picks, including the 2025 selection they received from the Lakers in the Anthony Davis trade. It also cost them Larry Nance Jr., Dyson Daniels, and E.J. Liddell. Here are the full details.

Murray to NOP

Atlanta was excited to get a young guard and a talented role player to pair with Young and number one overall pick Zaccharie Risacher.

Which side won this trade? The Pelicans acquired an All-Star, but it cost them plenty. Here is an in-depth look at the deal and a grade for both sides.

Grading the Dejounte Murray trade for the Pelicans

New Orleans needed a true point guard but will be hoping Murray can replicate his 2022 form. The 6’5 guard finished second in Most Improved Player voting and was an All-Star for the Spurs as he averaged 21.1 points, 9.2 assists, 8.3 rebounds, and 2.0 steals. He struggled on the defensive end in Atlanta but may bounce back in New Orleans.

Murray should be back on the ball with the Pelicans. It will give him the opportunity to make more plays and allow him to return to form. Zion Williamson will draw the defense, which should further open things up for Murray.

It cost them two first-round draft picks, but neither was New Orleans's own selection. The Pelicans will miss Larry Nance Jr. and Dyson Daniels, but neither played more than 22.3 minutes per game this season. Murray will certainly see more action and should be a difference-maker in the Big Easy.

Pelicans Grade: B+

This was not the perfect trade for the Pelicans, but they certainly improved their roster. If they are getting the 2022 version of Dejounte Murray, this could be a slam-dunk deal. Even if Murray is no longer an All-Star, he should be the lead playmaker in New Orleans. Expect him to make a significant offensive impact and do not be surprised to see his defense bounce back with the Pels.

The New Orleans Pelicans have several questions left to answer. They need a starting center and must sort out the future of Brandon Ingram. David Griffin has more moves to make, but this was a positive start. Stay tuned to see what is next.