Chicago Bulls 2013 Player Profile: Erik Murphy

By Courtney Harden
Chicago Bulls 2013 Player Profile: Erik Murphy
Stephen R. Sylvanie – USA TODAY Sports

Last season, the Chicago Bulls needed to add some 3-point shooting to their offense off the bench. They picked up Vladimir Radmanovic to be a stretch power forward who can come in and knock down shots.

It was a complete failure and disaster. Radmanovic barely got off the bench and when he did, he could not hit them. So the Bulls looked to the 2013 NBA Draft and selected Erik Murphy from the University of Florida (49th pick) to fill that role.

Murphy will bring a different dimension to the Bulls’ offense. The Bulls only averaged 92.3 points per game last season because they had a glaring weakness: they were unable to stretch the floor with shooters. They ranked 20th in 3-point shooting, connecting on just 35 percent from beyond the arc.

This is where Murphy will be a tremendous upgrade. In the 2012-2013 season with Florida, Murphy connected on 45 percent of his 3-point attempts. You will not be able to leave him alone outside because his most lethal weapon is his outside shot.

Murphy is more than just a spot-up shooter. In the summer league, he proved he can put the ball on the floor, bang in the low post and finish strong around the rim. He can run the floor effectively, which is very similar to Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson.

Murphy does come with some weaknesses in his game. He lacks foot speed, which will be a problem against quicker power forwards. He is a very mediocre defender, but coach Tom Thibodeau and his schemes should help remedy that issue.

The question on Bulls’ fans minds is this: how much will Murphy contribute? He probably won’t play much this season because he will be the fourth big man in the rotation, but the Bulls did address a need of outside shooting, and Erik Murphy will be ready when his number is called.

Courtney Harden is a Chicago Bulls writer for   Follow him on Twitter @courtney110979, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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