Look out, folks: Canada is becoming a premium source for NBA content. A year after the Toronto Raptors won the NBA championship, Jamal Murray has turned heads at every opportunity in the Orlando Bubble.
Previous moments when Canada was front and centre were few and far between and can be counted on one hand: Vince Carter putting the Raptors on the map in the 2000 Slam Dunk Contest, Steve Nash putting up a couple of mesmerizing MVP seasons. Shouts to role players like Rick Fox and Tristan Thompson who did their thing on championship teams, Jamaal Magloire who was once an All-Star, and Kelly Olynyk who will be in the NBA Finals with the Miami Heat.
With Canadians accounting for the largest representation outside of the United States in the NBA, Murray’s 2020 playoff run showed that he’s ready to carry the torch and lead a pack that includes the impressive Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the emerging RJ Barrett, and a refreshed Andrew Wiggins in Golden State. The Kitchener, Ontario native led the Denver Nuggets to the Western Conference Finals—where they finally met their match in the L.A. Lakers—and averaged 26.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 6.6 assists on 51-45-90 shooting splits. The only three players to have shot at least 50-40-90 and averaged 25-plus points in the playoffs? Larry Bird, Kevin Durant, and Kawhi Leonard.
Here are the five most memorable moments of Murray’s historic run that will live on in playoff folklore forever: