FIN - Murphy at last joins Wolfpack
HELSINKI (FIBA Basketball World Cup) - The long wait is over for Erik Murphy.
The 23-year-old arrived in Helsinki this week and is at last playing with Finland's national team.
In less than a month, the Wolfpack will play at the FIBA Basketball World Cup in Bilbao, Spain, and American-born Murphy, whose mother Paivi hails from Finland, is eager to help the squad out in any way possible.
"Representing the national team means a lot to me because being Finnish is something that I am extremely proud of," he said while being unveiled to the media.
"I'm willing to do anything to help the team."
A 2.08m power forward best known for his smooth shooting stroke, Murphy is a late arrival because of his NBA commitments.
After a standout collegiate career with the Florida Gators, he was drafted by the Chicago Bulls but saw little playing time with them last season as a rookie and was let go late in the campaign.
He finished the season with the Utah Jazz and played for them in the NBA Summer League before being acquired by the Cleveland Cavaliers in a multi-player trade on 22 July.
Right now, his focus is only on making Finland's World Cup squad.
Finland coach Henrik Dettmann is confident that Murphy will make a smooth transition to international basketball.
"As long as Erik is going to do his best and is constantly evolving, that's enough for me," he said.
"The way we play is we have an open system, which is easier to get used to than a closed system.
"Erik has enough basketball fundamental skills that will enable him to adapt to our system."
Murphy says he has already gotten a chance to see how the Finns play.
"Henrik has given me videos," he said, "so I’m familiar with the players and I know what style the team wants to play."