Tony Snell and Erik Murphy are the two rookie additions to the Chicago Bulls this season. Snell was drafted by Chicago No. 20 overall out of New Mexico in the June draft, while Murphy was taken No. 49 overall out of Florida in round two.
Both rookies had decent showings in the Las Vegas summer league, and although Tom Thibodeau usually shies away from giving first year players minutes, the talent these two have suggests we could see them on the court a lot this season, especially considering the work general manager Gar Forman has said the duo have been putting in.
“We’re really excited about Tony. First and foremost, we thought his makeup and character would fit well with what we’re doing here and that’s proven to be – up to this point – 100 percent correct,” Forman said to Bulls TV. “He’s lived in [the Berto Center]. He comes in, he watches film, he gets a good hour and a half [working out] on the floor, and then he gets his time in the weight room. He hasn’t missed a day and we’re already seeing progress and growth. I think he’s really going to fit in with our locker room and on the floor.
“I thought he had a really good summer league for us and you could see his confidence grow each and every game. He’s not a mistake player. He defends, he gets through screens, he’s got length, he’s got athleticism, he can make an open shot and he can handle and pass it some. So we’re really encouraged with what we’re seeing from Tony and encouraged with working with him on a daily basis and in interacting with him on how well he’s fit.”
As for Murphy, Gar Forman praised his second round pick as well.
“Just like Tony, [Erik] has been here every day. We’re really encouraged by his work ethic and the time that he’s putting in,” Forman said. “And like Tony, I thought he had a really good summer league for us and you could see his confidence grow – I think he hit six three’s in our last summer league game. He can shoot the ball. He has an NBA skill and again, he’s our kind of guy. We’re encouraged by what we’ve seen from Erik up to this point.”