In light of all the 2014 draft speculation on this site, I thought I would try an exercise that is a little different. NO draft talk, but PLEASE read the post carefully before posting.
Kendall Marshall has had a career renaissance of sorts in Los Angeles. Tony Wroten was plucked from the end of the bench in Memphis last year, and has been given a big role on Philadelphia in 2013. Tobias Harris, a little known player in Milwaukee who came to Orlando in the JJ Redick trade, gained the first meaningful minutes of his career with the Magic, and made them very productive.
There is something very satisfying (as a fan of a team) with acquiring a less desirable player in one teams’ eyes, and giving them room to blossom into at least a quality role player in another team’s eyes. I truly feel there are valuable players on the end of contending team’s benches that can be had by the Magic. I know a few people on this site advocated for taking a chance on Wroten, Marshall, etc. before they were acquired by their potential teams. Young former 1st rd. picks that are struggling to find playing time and roles with contending teams are exactly what Orlando should be looking into in February. Players that have flaws, may not be productive, but haven’t been given enough of an opportunity on their respective teams.
I want OPP followers to do some research, this can be fun! Identify a player in the NBA who you think can make our team better, fits into the long term plans, and meets the requirements’ I have listed below. Again, these are young players who probably have awful numbers in limited minutes on their teams, not all-stars. We are mining for gold in this exercise. We are acquiring players, and giving them hypothetical minutes at a minimal financial risk.
ALSO – no need to list other players names in a trade, this is all hypothetical. Don’t get the trade machine involved. We can all assume the deal would involve Davis, Maxiell, Nelson, etc. I don’t need people to be that specific. Just identify a player in the comments section that is young, possibly undervalued, fits the criteria below, and could thrive in Orlando given an opportunity.
Bargain Bin Requirements:
Under the Age of 25 (This age requirement is reflective of the young core already in place in Orlando)
Makes less than 2.5 million per year (most late-former 1st rd picks will fit into this salary scale anyway)
Former 1st rd. pick (at one point, some NBA scouts believed this player could be productive and useful)
No expiring contracts (acquiring this player would be useless, not enough time to see what they could do because the contract would expire)
Is getting less than 15 minutes per game (not in the team’s rotation, a 3rd string/end of the bench guy)
No one from 2013 Draft (last year’s draft)(too early for teams to already give up on these players)
Meyers Leonard, 7-1 Center –
22 years old
2.2 million through 2016
Former 1st rd pick (2012, #11)
Current Playing time – 9 minutes/game
Have fun with this, looking forward to productive comments!