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Magic GM Talks Expectations, Offseason Moves

It was an eventful offseason for the Magic, who traded former second overall pick Victor Oladipo and the No. 11 selection in this year’s draft in a deal for Serge Ibaka, then landed Bismack Biyombo, Jeff Green, and D.J. Augustin in free agency, while signing Evan Fournier to a lucrative new extension.

Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel sat down with Magic general manager Rob Hennigan to discuss the team’s offseason moves, expectations for the coming season, and a handful of other topics. The whole conversation is worth reading, particularly for Magic fans, but here are a few of Hennigan’s comments from the discussion:

On expectations for the Magic in 2016/17:

“I think first and foremost our expectation is that we’ll cement an identity for ourselves as a smart, physical, unselfish, defensive-minded team. And we expect to make the playoffs. … I prefer not to [predict a win total] just because I’m not sure how relevant that is. What’s important is getting into the playoffs.”

On whether there will be enough minutes to go around for Ibaka, Biyombo, and Nikola Vucevic:

“We think there are, and we think that’s going to sort itself out with our team’s play and their individual play. What’s important to us is making sure that we’re winning games and that our collective mindset is just that. We don’t see that as a threat. If anything, we see that as a strength.”

On whether the Magic have enough shooting:

“You can never have enough shooting, right? But we’re confident we’ll be a better shooting team this season. I think we’ve improved our perimeter shooting and our ability to make shots from distance since last season both with the additions we made in D.J. Augustin and Jodie Meeks and C.J. Wilcox and Serge Ibaka and also the internal shooting development of Elfrid [Payton] and Mario [Hezonja] and Aaron [Gordon] and Evan and Nik. So we feel like we’ve improved in that area, and we’ll continue to look to improve in that area. But we certainly don’t see it as much of a weakness heading into the year.”

On the Ibaka trade:

“I’ve always talked about being opportunistic and I think that trade was emblematic of an opportunity we felt was available to us to accelerate the progress of the team. Again, we’re always going to do what we feel is in the best interests of the organization. We’re trying to win. We’re also trying to make sure we can continue to build in a fashion that will allow us to be competitive for a long time. All of that has fallen under the umbrella of seeking out opportunities and making sure that we’re responsible in whatever decisions we make.”

On adding depth throughout the roster this offseason:

“We made it a priority this summer to ensure that we have competition at all positions across the board. That will be the first time we’ve had that since this rebuilding began. We see that as a healthy dynamic and as something that will make all of our players better. I think if you ask the players, that’s how they want it to be: really having a competitive daily situation to earn minutes.”

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One thought on “Magic GM Talks Expectations, Offseason Moves

  1. March

    I don’t think Ibaka was worth that. But we will see won’t we.

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