Mandatory Credit: Douglas Jones-US PRESSWIRE
The Orlando Magic have told rookies Justin Harper and DeAndre Liggins they expect them to participate in the 2012 Orlando Pro Summer League in July, reports John Denton of OrlandoMagic.com. The pair, which have not cracked the Magic's playing rotation, will join whichever rookies, free agents, and hangers-on Orlando assembles for the first-ever Summer League the team has hosted at Amway Center. The Magic have yet to make a formal announcement about the Orlando Pro Summer League, but Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reported earlier in April the team intends to host it from July 9th-13th.
The Summer League enables teams to get a closer look at their draft picks, along with other NBA hopefuls, just after the Draft and during the NBA free-agent period. Orlando's summer gathering differs from the NBA's flagship league in Las Vegas in that it's significantly smaller, often drawing only four or five other teams, and not open to the public.
Harper, whose draft rights the Magic acquired from the Cleveland Cavaliers for second-round picks in 2013 and 2014 the night of the 2011 NBA Draft, has played 51 minutes across 13 appearances for Orlando, scoring four points and grabbing five rebounds. The former Richmond Spiders star ranked highly on Orlando's draft board and drew comparisons to former Magic forward Rashard Lewis due to his combination of size and shooting range, as well as his ability to play both forward positions.
Liggins, the Kentucky Wildcat on whom Orlando used the 53rd overall selection in 2011, has made 16 appearances and played 53 minutes. He's tallied 26 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, six steals, and eight turnovers.
Additionally, in response to a question a fan asked him via Twitter, Magic guard Von Wafer said he also plans to play in the summer league. The Magic obtained Wafer and Glen Davis in a sign-and-trade deal with the Boston Celtics involving Brandon Bass. Wafer signed a three-year contract, but the second and third seasons are fully unguaranteed, according to ShamSports.com. The six-year veteran has provided scoring punch off the bench in 32 appearances, averaging 5.7 points in just 13.4 minutes per game. On a per-minute basis, only Dwight Howard and Ryan Anderson have scored more.