"With veterans Jameer Nelson, Hedo Turkoglu, J.J. Redick, Al Harrington, [Arron] Afflalo and [Glen] Davis expected to command most of the minutes and shot attempts this season, the center position is the Magic’s one spot where major question marks remain," writes Denton. After spending the first four years of his career backing up Kevin Garnett with the Boston Celtics, and then losing out to Ryan Anderson in his first pinstriped season, Davis has a pretty solid grip on the starting power forward job. "I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time, so I have no complaints at all," Davis said.
The candidates to start at center, says Denton, are second-year pros Gustavo Ayón and Nikola Vučević, as well as rookie Kyle O'Quinn.
Jacque Vaughn, the Magic's first-year head coach, prepared for training camp by watching footage of Ayón's and Vučević's rookie seasons. "I’ll give them the chance to prove themselves on the floor," Vaughn said. "My initial thoughts are that Goose [Ayón] is extremely physical, plays hard and runs the floor extremely well. Nik is very skilled, does a great job of shooting the ball and he’ll be a great teammate."
Ayón is athletic, energetic, and a disruptive defender. He can make a living offensively on stick-backs and rolling to the rim. Vučević is more of a jump-shooter who struggles to draw fouls and bang, but his rebounding at both ends is impressive for a 21-year-old. O'Quinn didn't dominate at Norfolk State, but his energy and willingness to do the dirty work could help him earn playing time as a rookie.
Like Vaughn, each of the starting center candidates is new to the Magic. Orlando Pinstriped Post took a closer look at the team's frontcourt options in this story before training camp.