After scoring 12 of his 23 points in the 4th quarter of the Lakers satisfying win over the Denver Nuggets, Isaiah Thomas tossed the ball to Jamal Murray with a couple of seconds left in regulation just so the crowd could boo Murray one more time.
If you aren’t aware of the beef between the bow-and-arrow-shooting Nugget and the young Lakers, the story goes back to December.
PART 1: JAMAL VS JULIUS
After scoring a game-high 28 points, Jamal Murray decided to dribble around Lonzo Ball in the final seconds of a Nuggets victory/Lakers collapse (the Lakers were outscored 15-0 in the final minutes). Julius Randle took exception to the showboating move by Murray, pushed him and picked up a tech.
Lonzo Ball called the play a “punk move” and an apologetic sounding Murray said, “I may have taken it too far. It was a bad play by me. The energy was so great and we had such a great game. Like I said, I may have taken it too far but the energy was great and I felt like we could do anything we wanted.”
At the time, we thought this was going to be the end of the story, but thankfully, the two teams gave us an entertaining sequel in their next meeting.
PART 2: JAMAL VS LUKE
In the final seconds of the Nuggets win over the Lakers on March 9th, Coach Luke Walton stepped onto the court to yell and curse out Murray, who was being followed to the bench by Isaiah Thomas after a pair of free throws.
“I felt like for the second time we played here, Murray was being a little disrespectful at the end of the game,” said Walton “Just some trash-talking toward our guys.”
When asked about Murray, Lonzo provided some great dialogue while saying he wasn’t interested in making this story into a franchise.
“I don’t know, I don’t really worry about Jamal Murray,” Ball said. “Like I said, ain’t nobody worried about him…Like I said, he going to do the circus stuff. I’m not feeding into it.”
This time, Murray wasn’t so apologetic sounding.
“I can’t control what the other team’s gonna feel,” Said Murray, who finished with team-highs of 22 points and 8 assists. “I’m just gonna go out there and hoop, and whoever takes it to heart and takes their losses salty, I can’t do anything about that.”
PART 3: JAMAL VS ISAIAH
Since the Lakers and Nuggets don’t play again this season, the 2017/18 Lakers vs Murray trilogy ended on Tuesday night and Lakers fans couldn’t have asked for a better ending than the one they got: Isaiah Thomas scoring at will, crossing (and smiling at) Nikola Jokic, and tossing the ball at Murray in the final seconds.
Besides the joy of being able to chant “Murray sucks,” Lakers fans are also happy about the Lakers’ winning 8 of their last 10 games and Thomas averaging 19.3 points and 6.3 assists off the bench for the month of March.