“These shoes give me life”
Jamal Murray had the game of a lifetime on Sunday night, and he credits the emotional pain he played through with helping to propel him.
Murray had a lights-out shooting night, going 17-of-24 from the floor (including 9-of-12 from three) on his way to scoring 50 points in a 119–107 win to force a Game 7 against the Jazz.
It was Murray’s second 50-point game of the series. In the regular season, he never scored more than 39 points in a game and topped 30 just six times. He’s taken it to another level in the last three games of this playoff series, though. After dropping 50 in a narrow loss in Game 4, Murray had 42 in a Game 5 victory and then 50 again on Sunday. The only players to have multiple 50-point games in the same playoff series are Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, Murray and Donovan Mitchell, who did it in Game 1 and Game 5 of this series.
But Murray wasn’t jubilant after the game. He was somber. His on-court interview with TNT sideline reporter Jared Greenberg was full of raw emotion.
“I just want to win,” Murray said. “In life, you find things that hold value to you, things to fight for. We found something worth fighting for, as the NBA, as a collective unit. I use these shoes as a symbol to me to keep fighting, all around the world. They give me a lot of power to keep fighting. We want to win. I show my emotions, it comes out.”
After Murray left the floor, he was seen in the tunnel area falling to his knees.
Murray was similarly emotional in his press conference after the game.
Asked about the footage of him in the tunnel, Murray said it was “hard to put into words” what he was feeling in that moment.
“Just know there’s a lot of emotion, and I try to play with that, as you can see. I use that to will myself to be great, and to be better. Without basketball, I don’t know where I’d be or who I’d be. Like I said, just a lot of emotion, more than I can put into words. I had to take some time to myself, a moment to myself, to regroup before I go into the locker room.”
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