When Erik Murphy heard his name called by Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver in the second round of June's NBA draft, the first phone call he received was from Gar Forman, a standard call to receive for any draftee.
But the second call Murphy received was a bit more surprising.
"Jo called me, Joakim (Noah)," Murphy said during today's Bulls Day at Comcast SportsNet. "And he was going crazy, I've know him for a while so he was all excited. It was special moment for sure and something I won't forget."
Noah won two national championships under Billy Donovan and the Florida Gators, where Murphy played before the Bulls took him with the No. 49 pick.
Murphy is hoping to now make more memories as he fights in training camp, looking to latch on the end of the Bulls' roster. And one player who is showing him just how important it is to come to work every day is his fellow Gator, Noah.
"He's unbelievable. He brings it every day, 110 percent," said Murphy, a stretch-power forward who will give the Bulls some much needed outside range. "(Noah) has one of the best motors I've ever seen and he's a high-energy guy, a high-effort guy and I think everybody can learn from that and that's one thing I'm trying to do."
Knowing what it takes to succeed each day is something Noah learned quickly under Tom Thibodeau. Murphy admits Thibodeau has been hard on the players -- as always -- but he's also got a soft side to him.
"He's actually really funny," Murphy said. "In practice, somebody will do something and he'll drop a quick one-liner. He has a good sense of humor so it's always nice when he does that."
Rookie Tony Snell agreed, saying Thibodeau has pushed him to be a better player on the defensive end: "He's been great, I love him. He's a really good coach and he's really strict on defense and I respect that because defense wins games."
Snell has performed better each night, beginning with Summer League play, and knows that he'll need to do the little things to see the court this season.
"Just do whatever I have to do: make hustle plays, shoot the ball, makes shots make plays, get rebounds," Snell said. "Anything I can go to help this team win."