Yesterday, it was reported how former NBA veteran Von Wafer took to social media to express his desire to make a comeback. With other players like Ray Allen, Carlos Boozer and Rip Hamilton all hinting on a return, another player can be added to that list – Ronald “Flip” Murray.
In a recent interview with Basketball Insiders, the 36-year-old guard said that he has been working hard in the gym to get himself back in condition. He suddenly disappeared in any team roster back in the lockout season of 2011-2012 because of a hip injury, and never really got a chance to play in the league again. Now, he is determined to still pursue his NBA dream:
“I work out every day, I’m in Philly right now working out with a group of guys, a lot of college guys and guys who play overseas. Some guys who actually play for Philly work out at the same center down here. Some workouts are at La Salle and some workouts are at Temple University, but we’re working out every day. Usually, we go lift from like 8-9 a.m. and then we do workouts from like 9:30-10:30 a.m. and then play a little bit of pick-up afterwards. Dionte Christmas, who played in the league and played overseas as well, is one of the guys. The Morris Twins [Marcus and Markieff], Dion Waiters, Hakim Warrick, Mark Tyndale – who played at Temple as well as overseas and in the D-League – are some of the guys there.”
“It was a bad situation because at the end of the day, that’s when we went into the lockout year and during the time of the lockout, we were doing a lot of charity games where we would be playing against different cities, I actually ended up suffering a major injury, fracturing my hip. When I fractured my hip, I was out for about four to five months and it took me a while to get back to 100 percent after that.”
After rehabbing from the injury, he used his chance to play in the D-league in 2012 to regain his lost confidence, as well as to mentor younger players trying to break an NBA team's roster that time. He played well there and even helped the Austin Toros win the championship. He was the team's first option on offense, and as a result, averaged 21.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.9 assists, and 1.5 steals in 38.8 minutes while shooting 43.3 percent from the field.
“I didn’t mind playing in the D-League, a lot of people thought I was done playing basketball because I suffered that hip injury and nobody really saw me play for a while. Because of that, I wanted to just go out there and show people that I could still play and that I still love the game. It was a good experience for me; I had a chance to connect with some younger guys that were trying to make an NBA roster at the time. It was more of a leadership role for me playing down there with the young guys, but I also still had a nice experience playing there because there’s a lot of talent. And a lot of those talented guys I was playing against made it up to the NBA.
“When I came back from the injury, I went to the Austin Toros of the D-League and we won a championship in the D-League. At that time, I still wasn’t feeling 100 percent. I was probably around a good 80 percent. Following that, I just went overseas and played abroad for a couple years.”
After playing three-and-a-half years abroad, particularly in Turkey, Ukraine, and Lebanon, Murray is still getting interest from teams overseas, but says he is not ready to be away from his family anymore and is very driven to get back to the NBA. He also discussed what he can bring to a team should he be given a roster spot.
“But I just didn’t want to go back overseas because of the situation with my wife and my family. I didn’t want to leave them here and go back, you know? So that’s why I didn’t take the option of going back overseas. But I have been playing a lot and working out daily. I played in The Basketball Tournament, which includes professionals and college alumni teams. I also played in the Danny Rumph Classic in Philadelphia, and other competitive tournaments and leagues too.”
“I would definitely bring a lot of veteran leadership because I know the game of basketball, the way the game is now, I feel like I could fit perfectly in. I could be someone who comes off the bench and produces for the team. I’d also like to mentor the young guys and pass on some of the experiences and lessons I learned from playing against some of the guys I matched up against during my time. If I come in right now, I could bring a lot of veteran leadership and still be able to produce on the court.
“The way the game is set up now, I think my game fits perfectly for the NBA. The way the game is going now with a lot of pick-and-roll and a lot of iso and [creating your own shot], that opens up the floor for the spread fours who can shoot the three. With a lot of isos, it opens the floor up a lot so you are able to make plays for yourself as well as others. I believe I could come in and fit perfectly.”
He has very decent career averages of 9.9 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in 22.7 minutes per game. But after last playing in the league back in the 2009-2010 season, it will be very difficult for him to crack a team's roster, yet not impossible.
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