Cana­dian guard Ja­mal Murray doesn’t mind be­ing branded NBA vil­lain

StarMetro Vancouver - - SPORTS - Lori Ewing

TORONTO—IN the dy­ing sec­onds of Ja­mal Murray’s his­toric 48-point game last month, the Den­ver Nuggets guard launched up a long shot in an at­tempt to score 50 with the game al­ready well in hand — a flip­pant move that went against bas­ket­ball’s un­writ­ten code, ac­cord­ing to Kyrie Irv­ing.

The Bos­ton point guard re­sponded in anger, grab­bing the ball af­ter Murray’s missed shot and hurl­ing it 100 feet up into the stands.

Less than three sea­sons into his NBA ca­reer, the 21-yearold Murray has been branded a vil­lain, and is do­ing his best to shed that all-cana­di­ansare-nice-guys no­tion — on the bas­ket­ball court at least.

“It’s weird be­cause they call Cana­di­ans soft and they al­ways harp on that, and now they call me evil. Pick one, you can’t have both, man,” Murray said with a laugh. “I just go out there and com­pete. I love to chal­lenge peo­ple. You get to see who the


real peo­ple are when you chal­lenge peo­ple, they take it with grain of salt and chal­lenge you back or they just get frus­trated.”

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