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Monday, September 23, 2013
Bulls player preview: Erik Murphy

By Nick Friedell

With training camp almost here, Nick Friedell previews every player on the Bulls roster.

Erik Murphy
Bulls forward Erik Murphy got some experience in the NBA Summer League.

Erik Murphy

Age: 22 | Pos.: F | Salary: $490,180

Role for Bulls in 2013-14: Like fellow rookie Tony Snell, Murphy will likely be experiencing a redshirt year in Tom Thibodeau's system. Murphy will be asked to learn the nuances of the NBA game while continuing to improve his own. The good news for him is that fellow University of Florida alum Joakim Noah will be there to answer any questions he has and help him learn about the league.

What happened this summer?: Murphy made his NBA debut in the Las Vegas Summer League. He knows in order to prove he belongs in the league he must show that he can help the Bulls in many areas.

"Obviously, I just have to continue to improve defensively, rebounding, getting stronger," Murphy said after being introduced to the media in July. "Every aspect of my game, I think I can improve. If I do that, whatever happens... But I think I'll be all right."

What does the future hold?: The most common term associated to Murphy's game is that of a “stretch four.” Interesting description given that it's the same moniker usually tagged on former Bulls' draft pick Nikola Mirotic. If Mirotic eventually comes to the Bulls next summer it will be interesting to see how Murphy fits in the team's long-term plans. In the time being, the Bulls can gamble on a cheap second-round pick who has the ability to knock down long-range shots.

Bottom line: Don't expect to see Murphy play much this season as he learns more about the league and his demanding new coach.