The Orlando Magic announced Thursday they have signed Marreese Speights.
Speights, 29, has carved out a solid career as a journeyman backup big man, one with rebounding and, of late, three-point ability. He figures to provide depth behind Nikola Vucevic and Bismack Biyombo, the Magic’s only other two true big men. He may also contend for minutes with Khem Birch, the other new Orlando big.
Speights spent the previous season with the Los Angeles Clippers, averaging 8.7 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 1.3 made three-pointers per game in 15.7 minutes. That season was his first as a volume three-point shooter, as he averaged 3.4 attempts. The prior season, in the last of a three-year stint with the Golden State Warriors, he converted 38.7 percent of his triple-tries, but averaged less than one attempt per game.
While cautioning against overselling Speights’ potential impact on Orlando, it bears noting that he does address two of the team’s major needs due to the position he plays and his ability to space the floor. Speights represents another solid value pickup for the Magic’s new front-office, though it’s still difficult to envision this team contending for the playoffs, even in the weak East, for at least another season.