Tonight, the former El Toro High MVP and current center for Concordia University will take the court at Pauley Pavilion against UCLA. It's the first game of the season and it will be the game of his life.
I haven't been able to stop thinking about it, said Murillo, 19. I didn't know if I would ever play again. It's a big stage at UCLA. I'm nervous and excited. I'm sure I will be overwhelmed. It's such a big game. The last time I played was before I was stabbed.
Less than six months ago, doctors and his coaches didn't know whether Murillo would survive a 31/2-inch knife wound that nicked part of his heart and deflated his lung.
On April 26, Murillo was rushed to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana after being stabbed outside an Irvine home after a confrontation at a party. Police say Abdullah Wahidi, a member of the Afghanistan National Basketball team, stabbed Murillo.
Wahidi, of West Hills, now free on $750,000 bail, is charged with attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon. Sentence enhancements are for alleged use of a deadly weapon and attempting to inflict great bodily harm.
Murillo underwent four surgeries, suffered a collapsed lung and developed pneumonia. He was hospitalized for 15 days. The 6-feet-6-inch tall player lost 40 pounds after the attack.
Starting in early June and determined to make a comeback, Murillo started doing long walks and then light running to increase his lung strength. By August and September, he was conditioning with the team. He often had to sit out drills when the pain in his lung became intense and he couldn't breathe. His timed mile this year is a minute off last year's pace of 5:48.
Still his doctors have cleared him medically, which pleases Ken Ammann, head basketball coach at Concordia.
We're thankful each and every day that he's back with us, he said. It's scary what could have happened with the knife nicking his heart. This team would have never recovered from that.
Ammann said Murillo will be a huge presence for the team tonight, calling the UCLA matchup one of the hardest on this year's schedule. He said Murillo will be called on to play a lot.
We need him to be ready and he is, Ammann said. The fact that he's recovered and is out battling to help us win this year is inspiring to me, the coaching staff and the rest of the team.
But while Murillo is making a physical comeback, emotionally the incident and impending court case haunt him everyday. There have been several postponements in the case. On Sept. 18, both parties appeared for a pretrial that was continued to Nov. 13.
Murillo, whose parents live in Lake Forest, avoids talking about the incident and tries to keep his mind off what happened by staying busy with basketball and school work.
I get consumed in negative thoughts if I think about it, he said Tuesday before team practice. Most of my scars are emotional. I still think about the day a lot and I still see his face every day. I always thought about my physical recovery. I didn't think it would consume my mind.
Murillo said he receives a tremendous amount of support from his coaches, teammates, family and friends. He also gets regular counseling.
I'd give almost anything to take that day back and not have it be part of my life, he said. But I'd rather have it like this than not have it at all.
India qualify for Fiba Asia Championship - 4 Years ago
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India won the SABA Qualifying Round and booked the ticket to the 27th Fiba Asia Championship. They overcame Afghanistan 64:46 to finish their SABA Qualifying campaign with two victories in as many games. Afghanistan finished second at 1-1 record. Joginder Singh and Amjyot Singh (185-G-92) nailed 13 points each to pace the winners.
It was unexpectedly close game [read more]
India won the SABA Qualifying Round and booked the ticket to the 27th Fiba Asia Championship. They overcame Afghanistan 64:46 to finish their SABA Qualifying campaign with two victories in as many games. Afghanistan finished second at 1-1 record. Joginder Singh and Amjyot Singh (185-G-92) nailed 13 points each to pace the winners. It was unexpectedly close game. India was recognized as a big time favourite heading into this one but Afghanistan gave them all they could handle before dropping the decisive one in New Delhi. AmritPal Singh (201-F-91) nailed 12 points for the home side. Mustafa Wardak answered with 15 points for Afghanistan. Billal Azizi (198-F/C-91) netted 9 points in the loss. India became the fourteenth team that had guaranteed the 27th Fiba Asia Championship appearance. The tournament is slated to start on August 1 in Manila.
India overcome Afghanistan to reach Asian Games preliminary round - 7 Years ago
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India - Afghanistan 83:76
India will play in the Asian Games preliminary round. They held off Afghanistan yesterday to seal their birth in Group F. India will now take on Qatar, Iran, Philippines, Japan and Taiwan for the chance to stay in the title race. Afghanistan got to a slightly better start to the game. They earned a 16:14 lead ten minutes into the game. Afghanistan stayed in control in the second period. They went on an 18:7 run to establish a 38:30 halftime advantage [read more]
India - Afghanistan 83:76
India will play in the Asian Games preliminary round. They held off Afghanistan yesterday to seal their birth in Group F. India will now take on Qatar, Iran, Philippines, Japan and Taiwan for the chance to stay in the title race. Afghanistan got to a slightly better start to the game. They earned a 16:14 lead ten minutes into the game. Afghanistan stayed in control in the second period. They went on an 18:7 run to establish a 38:30 halftime advantage. India bounced back in the third term. They used a 12:3 rally to level things up at 53. India increased the tempo in the final minutes. They triggered a 14:7 surge that brought them the victory. Japdeep Singh (199-C-86) came up with 22 points to lead the effort. Trideep Rai (190-F-83) contributed 18 points and 7 rebounds, while Hareesh Koroth (185-G-84) netted 17 points in the win. Safi Mojaddidi (183-G-87) responded with game-high 25 points for Afghanistan. Ali Noorzad (193-G-85) netted 15 points in the loss.
4Yousof Etemadi195-G/F-78 5Nafi Mashriqi201-F/C-79NY Thunder 6Qais Haider193-F-87Afganistan NT 7Masseh Tahiry186-G/F-89Afganistan NT 8Sayed Yussuf Ansary183-G-89Afganistan NT 9Habib Kabir198-F/C-87Sacramento CC 10Abdullah Karimi183-G-82Afganistan NT 11Haroun Arefi193-G/F-87Afganistan NT 12Ali Noorzad193-G-85Afganistan NT 13Safi Mojaddidi183-G-87Afganistan NT 14M... [read more]
Afghani National Team for Asian Games in Guangzhou (China)
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