The NBA free-agent season is upon us, and fans of all the league's teams wanna know what moves theirs are gonna make in advance of the new season. In this post, the fourth edition of the Orlando Pinstriped Post Mailbag, I'll address your questions about Magic offseason moves relating to point guards, as that's what you've been asking about lately.
Remember that you can submit your questions to OPPMailbag@gmail.com. We don't have a set schedule to run these features, so we'll post them as the questions roll in. Put another way, we are always taking your questions. We want to hear from you.
Jonathan Rodriguez asks, via the OPP Facebook page:
Why don't we go after Rajon Rondo??
I can think of a few reasons.
That's not an indictment of Rondo at all. He's a terrific, unique, and productive player who should be making max dollars but isn't.
Rondo doesn't fit on the Magic's timeline. The young core of Nikola Vucevic, Tobias Harris, and Maurice Harkless has shown promise, and first-round Draft choice Victor Oladipo should fit nicely with that trio, but the league-worst Magic are more than one player away from competing for a playoff spot, even if that one player is an All-Star of Rondo's caliber.
I understand the argument that having Rondo around to lead a rebuild could help the youngsters' development. But there are plenty of veteran mentors in this league, and almost all of them come more cheaply--albeit with significantly less talent--than Rondo.
Do you think the Magic have a chance to acquire Brandon Jennings ?
The answer is not at all, and that's ignoring the questions of whether the Magic should even be interested in him, or if he's interested in Orlando.
As I outlined in the free-agency primer, the Magic won't have any cap space until or unless they renounce the Traded Player Exception they received in the Dwight Howard deal. And even if they did renounce the TPE, they'd only be able to offer Jennings a starting salary of $9 million. That's not a figure he's likely to accept, even though it's significantly more than he's worth.
Orlando could, in theory, work out a sign-and-trade with the Milwaukee Bucks for Jennings, but I don't think that's very likely in practice.
Brian Acosta asks:
Do you think its possible that we may sign Darren Collison since he's set to become [unrestricted]? He[']s young and cheap and may be more effective than Beno Udrih?
Again, the Magic don't have salary-cap space, so unless Collison were willing to accept the mid-level exception of just under $5 million, he's not a fit with the Magic.
The Magic should be considering signing players like Collison, though: youngsters who haven't quite fit with any of the teams of which they've been a part. In the right situation, such players can thrive.
Before taking a job with the Memphis Grizzlies, John Hollinger described this approach to player personnel as the "second draft" strategy, although it more directly applies to trading for players who are still on their rookie contracts. Harris is a great example of a second-draft player. So too is the Dallas Mavericks' signing of Brandan Wright in 2011; Wright, coincidentally, is reportedly a free agent in whom the Magic have shown interest.
Thanks for reading and for your submissions. Please submit your questions to OPPMailbag@gmail.com. Again, we are always taking questions. We'd love to do several of these posts per week, but we can't do it without you.