Nuggets guard Jamal Murray became a breakout star while playing inside the NBA’s playoff bubble last season. He helped lead Denver to the Western Conference finals against the Lakers and spoke out strongly and emotionally on civil rights issues.
Murray received more recognition Saturday night with the Breakout of the Year honor at the SI Awards. The native of Kitchener, Ont., was chosen over Jazz wing Donovan Mitchell, Cleveland pitcher Shane Bieber and Myisha Hines-Allen of the WNBA’s Washington Mystics.
The 23-year-old Murray shined last August with games of 50, 42 and 50 points in the first round against the Jazz, who got a huge series from Mitchell. He became the first player since Michael Jordan in 1993 to have three consecutive games of 40 or more points in a series.