Orlando Magic forward Matt Barnes and center Adonal Foyle turn 30 and 35 today, respectively. Barnes is in his first year with the team and has already made a huge impact, most notably on Sunday against the L.A. Lakers. One wonders if Kobe Bryant will bother sending his well-wishes along. His season got off to a rough start with poor shooting percentages and baffling turnovers, but he's settled down since joining the starting lineup and has proven to be a bargain at $1.6 million.
Foyle hasn't played at all this season as the 13th man on a 13-man team. And he hasn't played meaningful minutes with the Magic since November 2008; he did appear in the last few games of last season, with Orlando locked into the East's third seed and nothing to play for except pride. But Orlando didn't re-sign him for his rebounding or shot-blocking, two skills of his that haven't diminished too sharply with age. It wanted his calm, steady influence in the locker room and his decidedly less calm presence on the practice court. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said re-signing Foyle was the easiest personnel decision that he and GM Otis Smith had to make last summer.
Many happy returns, Matt and Adonal.