Southeast Notes: Magic, Wizards, Heat, Hawks

The Hawks acquired five players in the Joe Johnson trade last summer, and with their release of DeShawn Stevenson today, none of the five remain on the team's roster, as Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal Constitution points out via Twitter. GM Danny Ferry has radically reshaped the club in little more than a year, and the Stevenson move wasn't Atlanta's only transaction of the day, as we detail amid other news from the Southeast Division:

  • Magic owner Rich DeVos is 87 years old, but he has no plans to sell the club, as Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel writes in an early Eastern Conference preview. Instead, he has given his four children shares of the Magic with the intent that the family will continue to own the team for decades to come.
  • The Magic would like to pursue a one-to-one affiliation with a D-League team that would be stationed in Florida, but obstacles are in the way, Robbins reports in the same piece. Orlando will be one of six teams sharing the Fort Wayne Mad Ants this season. Ideally, the Magic want to have a "hybrid" partnership, wherein they'd run the D-League team's basketball operations while local ownership took care of the business side.
  • The Wizards seem likely to push for one of the final three playoff spots in the East, and owner Ted Leonsis believes a postseason berth would be a significant help to the team's hopes of signing a marquee free agent, observes Michael Lee of The Washington Post.
  • Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel believes that with so many teams with an eye on the lottery, buyouts could come earlier than usual this season. Winderman figures the Heat will be active in the market for bought-out players.
  • Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer completed his staff Friday, hiring Jim Thomas as an assistant, the team announced. Thomas had been serving as a scout for the Thunder.

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