The Orlando Magic was at the epicenter of the offseason when it first began. For many NBA fans, the Dwight Howard saga would not end. At long last, they traded him away for a bunch of garbage and some picks. They went from a top tier team to a lottery one. The team has gone into rebuilding mode.
Key Free Agent Acquisitions
Key Losses to Free Agency
Jameer Nelson– A three year deal worth $25.2 million for Nelson. It is not a good signing but the Magic had no choice. I do not like Nelson. I do not think he is a good point guard. Howard definitely made him look a lot better than he actually is. Why Nelson was offended when Howard said he would rather have D-Will than him is something I do not understand. Nelson is garbage.
Andrew Nicholson– Orlando’s 19th overall pick was a good selection. Nicholson will provide good minutes off the bench and could become a solid forward. If Glen Davis gets hurt, he can serve as a reliable replacement.
Kyle O’Quinn– Selected 49th overall, O’Quinn is also a good pick for the Magic. He is strong, a good rebounder, and defender. However, whether he will get good minutes as backup is something that is not known yet.
Ryan Anderson to New Orleans– Ryan Anderson had a great season last year. He won the Most Improved Player award. However, his big season demanded a bigger contract which Orlando did not give. Instead they traded him to New Orleans for Gustavo Ayon. Ayon is not a household name, but he played well for New Orleans.
Dwight Howard to Los Angeles– The trade finally happened. For a lot of NBA fans, including myself, it seemed like this saga was going to continue to drag on. Orlando received Arron Afflalo, Nikola Vucevic, Al Harrington, Maurice Harkless, Christian Eyenga, Josh McRoberts and draft considerations. How does the cliché go? Quality not quantity? The Magic received a lot of players in return but nothing great. Afflalo is not as good as people make him out to be, Harrington is old, and McRoberts is not good. Eyenga will be a bench warmer more likely than not. Vucevic was doing a nice job in Philly until LaVoy Allen took him out. The player that may turn out to be the best is Maurice Harkless, the rookie out of St. John’s.
The Orlando Magic will enter this season with a brand new team. They got rid of Dwight Howard, arguably the best player in franchise history, and replaced him with role players. It will be a long season for Orlando and it will be a while before they get back to the playoff team they had been the past few seasons. I have them finishing fourth in the Southeast division and thirteenth in the Eastern Conference.
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