By Michael Spencer

(CBS4) – Despite speculation that Jamal Murray might have been able to return to the NBA Playoffs, the Denver Nuggets star said that he wasn’t as close as most people expected.

Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray at Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado on Friday, April 29, 2022.

Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray at Ball Arena on Friday. (credit: Hyoung Chang/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

When asked how close he was to coming back, Murray replied, “Not close enough, clearly.”

Murray did not play during the 2021-2022 season after tearing his ACL toward the end of the 2020-2021 season, and said he had good days and bad days during his rehab process, which kept him from a return to game action.

When asked whether the return to the floor was limited due to mental or physical issues Murray replied, “both.”

“I have to feel good to play. I have some great days where I’m like, ‘there’s no soreness and I feel like I can go,’ and then you have the days right after that where it puts things into perspective where I’m just not there yet.”

Murray said he’s wouldn’t even put himself at 85%, and didn’t want to give a time frame on when he would be 100%.

“If I have the ball in my hand and I want to go make a layup, I’m still thinking about what leg I want to take off. I haven’t run full speed and taken off two legs. If there’s a loose ball, I don’t know if I can go get it, or save it,” said Murray. “There are still thoughts in my head about my leg. There’s layers, there’s a lot of different layers to this, it’s tough to deal with.”

Murray is expecting to be back and ready to go by the time the season starts, and does expect to play in the preseason next year.

“I’m on a great path, I’m going to have a great summer,” he said.”

“I have no doubt I can return to form.”

Michael Spencer