The first of what will likely be many trade rumors surrounding the Orlando Magic was revealed yesterday.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN wrote that the Pistons inquired about a potential trade for Evan Fournier.
Detroit pursued a deal for Fournier, but that would’ve been hard to execute without Reggie Jackson’s contract included -- even if Detroit decided to include promising rookie Luke Kennard. Jackson will be sidelined for another month-plus with a severely sprained ankle.
Fournier is the Magic’s second leading scorer at 17.9 points per game, which is a career-best. He has three more years remaining on his contract, which will pay him $17 million per.
Jackson, a 27-year old point guard who will be out until after the All-Star break with an ankle injury, is averaging 14.6 points and 5.5 assists in 33 games this season. He has two years remaining on his contract after this season, earning just over $17 million for the 2018-2019 season, and just over $18 million for the 2019-2020 season.
Kennard, a 21-year-old shooting guard the Pistons drafted with the 12th pick in the draft, is averaging 6.2 points per game. A three-point specialist, he is hitting 43 percent of his attempts from long range.
Woj doesn’t make it sound like an official offer was made, or if these would actually be the players involved in a potential deal. But I’d be more excited about bringing in Kennard than Jackson, an oft-injured shoot-first point guard who doesn’t seem like much of an upgrade over Elfrid Payton. If the Magic do deal with the Pistons, they should also inquire about having Stanley Johnson included. Wouldn’t mind taking a flyer on him.
However, it is probably in the Magic’s best interest to hold onto Fournier until just before February 8 deadline when contenders and fringe playoff teams may sweeten their offers.
Your thoughts? Should the Magic call Stan Van Gundy back immediately and take the deal for Jackson? Should they keep Fournier?