Paolo Banchero vs. Dejounte Murray NBA Instagram Beef Explained

The battle of words between Atlanta Hawks star Dejounte Murray and Orlando Magic rookie Paolo Banchero can be explained via Instagram.

The NBA offseason has been relatively quiet since Summer League as fans wait and see if any rumors about Kevin Durant, Donovan Mitchell or Jayson Tatum finally surface.

Perhaps that’s what prompted a surprise — and very public — showdown between the Atlanta Hawks’ newest signing Dejount Murray and No. 1 overall draft pick Paolo Banchero surprised everyone.

The two Seattle natives starred on Isaiah Thomas’ seventh “Zeke end“Pro-Am tournament at Tacoma Community College in Washington, but what seemed like friendly fire turned into personal gunfire between the two.

At first it all seemed to come down to an elbow jab Murray threw into Banchero’s back, after which Murray leapt in the air for a backboard alley-oop.

That could have been dismissed as competition on the pitch, but then Murray unfollowed Banchero on Instagram after the game, which Banchero posted on his Instagram story.

“It has to be something personal, right?” Banchero posed for Murray. “That’s good. Just be careful next time and stop sending doubles family,” Banchero continued with a laughing emoji.

Murray then continued to reply his Instagram story clarifying his beef with banchero went well beyond a local pro-am game. The two have known each other for years — Banchero always asked to make a rebound for Murray, according to the Hawks guard — and Murray doesn’t like how fame has changed Banchero.

“You made it and changed and I lost all respect!” Murray said.

“Stay humble. This life you are in right now is real and not a joke!” Murray continued. “I still want to see you win because I am!”

Paolo Banchero vs. Dejounte Murray NBA Instagram Beef Explained

From fandom to philosophy, NBA fans have already taken sides. There’s the idea that Murray needs to check a rookie’s arrogance on entering the league at the door and it’s not unreasonable to imagine a No. 1 pick having a high opinion of themselves.

But there’s also the way Murray conveyed his message about humility. Rather than speaking to Banchero privately, Murray made sure everyone else knew what he thought of the former Duke star. Murray not only shoved him for a dunk, but loudly smashed his thoughts at Banchero throughout the game after Murray failed to block him.

“Why did you all come?” Murray asked the crowd. ‘Why did they come? It’s a men’s league; he is a little boy.”

“He’s too soft,” Murray repeated several times.

Further context adds that Murray was the one with a problem, as Banchero seems to have completely forgotten his anger before the Instagram unfollow. Another clip shows Banchero hitting Murray with a body in defense and sending him down. Banchero didn’t seem to realize how angry Murray was until Murray checked him out, and Banchero just hugged him in response.

While few know what really fueled this animosity between Murray and Banchero, it’s clear that Banchero didn’t believe in their physical game while Murray had an ax to sharpen.

Unfortunately, this ruined a friendship between two Seattle natives, but it fuels a rivalry between the Atlanta Hawks and Orlando Magic that will surely be entertaining in the upcoming season. Paolo Banchero vs. Dejounte Murray NBA Instagram Beef Explained

John Verrall

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