With apologies to Dwight Howard
January 6th, 2008

In my season preview of the Orlando Magic, written back in October and located here, I wrote something that looks a bit stupid in hindsight. At this point, I’d quite like to try and weasel my way out most of it. The following are some quotes that I stand by: It would be very difficult if not impossible to provide a commentary on the Rashard Lewis sign-and-trade while also managing to take an interesting or unique viewpoint, or to say anything that hasn’t already been said. So I won’t. But I will recommend that you look at the figure that he signed for (listed above), and think long and hard about whether he is worth it. And if you come up with any answer other than “no”, keep looking at it until you do. In 2013, a 33 year old Rashard Lewis is going to be being paid nearly $22.7 million.¬† So now, ask yourselves whether the trio of Hill, Milicic and Diener (who should, without a doubt, have played over Carlos Arroyo all of last season, and who is now nicely lined up for a breakout season) is going to help any more than Rashard Lewis on his own. It’s a tough answer, but either way, the Magic’s player personnel¬†did not improve much. If at all. Last season’s mediocre performance suggests that the good run to end the 2005/06 season was nothing more than an aberration. With better coaching and better performance this season, the Magic have the opportunity to show that it was last season that was the anomaly instead. If Orlando gets breakout performances from one or perhaps a couple of young players (specifically looking in the directions of Jameer Nelson and J.J. Redick), they could contend for the open Southeast Division title. If you only read […]

Posted by at 8:04 PM

30 teams in 36 or so days: Orlando Magic
September 16th, 2007

Players acquired via free agency or trade: Rashard Lewis (signed and traded from Seattle, six years, $112,753,504) Adonal Foyle (two year minimum) Marcin Gortat (two year minimum)   Players acquired via draft: First round: None Second round: Miroslav Rakovic (60th overall, unsigned)   Players retained: Keyon Dooling (opted in), Pat Garrity (opted in)   Players departed: Travis Diener (signed with Indiana), Grant Hill (signed with Phoenix), Darko Milicic (signed with Memphis), Bo Outlaw (unsigned, may yet return)   Bobbins: In a seven-day period in February 2006, first-year GM Otis Smith made two trades. One saw the expiring contract of Kelvin Cato and a 2007 first-rounder (later parlayed into Rodney Stuckey) dealt to Detroit for Darko Milicic and Carlos Arroyo, and one saw falling star Steve Francis dealt to New York – in a trade only Isiah Thomas could make – for Trevor Ariza and the huge expiring contract of Penny Hardaway. Within a week, the floundering Magic had been re-invigorated. Since the McGrady/Hill era had failed several years prior, the John Weisbrod era had made the Magic’s fortunes worsen further. Managing to do almost everything wrong, Weisbrod saw fit to end the McGrady in Orlando era by dealing him and Juwan Howard to Houston for Francis, Cato and Cuttino Mobley, a trade which vastly improved Houston but which didn’t do much for Orlando. Daring and skilled enough to somehow make the situation worse, though, Weisbrod subsequently traded Mobley to Sacramento for Doug Christie, a man who played only 21 games with Orlando, scoring 119 points. And that’s not to even mention the Varejao and Gooden for Battie deal with Cleveland that he also rustled up. Weisbrod then resigned. Which seems fair. Yet with these two trades in early 2006, Smith had managed to get some serious value for the two […]

Posted by at 11:54 PM