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SB Nation Mock Draft: Why we traded the 11th pick for a veteran

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We moved the 11th pick in our mock draft for the sake of veteran stability.

Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

Every year SB Nation's NBA team sites get together and do a mock draft, with editors or a site writer playing the role of their respective teams GM. Of course, it wouldn't be a mock draft without the ability to make some trades, which seemed to happen left and right in this years version. At the end of the day, it doesn't mean a lot to what the likely outcome is come Thursday, but it's fun for all of us to get together and have some fun.

The entire time my plan was to trade the pick. Sitting at 11, and needing to find players who can make an immediate impact, moving the pick seemed to make the most sense, especially with how weak this draft class is.

That I did with the Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns.

After working and trying to get a bigger, better deal from an Orlando standpoint, I ended up settling on a smaller deal that would bring in some stability in the front court, and give the Magic the veteran they need.

The two sides had been talking Brandon Knight, but the Kings insisted that Phoenix take back Rudy Gay, something they didn't want to do with their target on the board with the eighth pick. In we stepped to help as the third team.

  • Orlando received Rudy Gay
  • Phoenix received Ersan Ilyasova, Devyn Marble and the eighth pick
  • Sacramento received Brandon Knight and the 11th pick

At the end of the day, we got exactly what we needed and wanted.

While Gay may not be the biggest, or sexiest name, he's a guy that can come in and make an impact right away for the Magic. He's a good defender, and can get a bucket late when needed, something the Magic have desperately missed over the past few years.

Add in the versatility Gay brings -- he's played some power forward over the past few years-- and the deal made even more sense.

I felt like this trade opened up a lot of possibilities for the Magic this summer as well. They're looking to turn the corner, and could be willing to cash in some of their assets, that could include Victor Oladipo. Adding Gay would allow the team to keep re-sign Evan Fournier and move on from Oladipo, should they choose, and give Elfrid Payton a better complimentary backcourt mate.

Gay has two years, with a player options on the second year, left on his contract as well, so it wouldn't put the Magic in a real bind cap wise moving forward.

Having Gay, who's a proven player in the league, would be highly important for the Magic as they made the transition into Frank Vogel's tenure as coach, and tried to make a run for the playoffs.

Ultimately, the players who were going to be available at 11, coupled with the fact that adding Gay would make an immediate impact now, led to myself making the deal.

After the completion of our first mock, we did a second with no trades, that could be a better representation of what happens on Thursday night. In that mock I selected Jakob Poeltl from Utah. Our friends at Ridiculous Upside will be posting that draft, along with each picks explanations, on Wednesday.

You can follow along and wee how each mock played out there, and discuss how you feel about this move down below.