The Magic have signed president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman and general manager John Hammond to contract extensions that run through the 2025/26 season, sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).
Weltman and Hammond took the reins in Orlando’s front office during the spring of 2017, after the club parted ways with former GM Rob Hennigan.
Since then, the Magic have a record of just 128-222 (.366), with a single winning season in 2018/19 (42-40). The team made the playoffs twice, but was eliminated in the first round by a 4-1 margin in both 2019 and 2020.
Although that résumé doesn’t look particularly impressive on paper, Wojnarowski says (via Twitter) that team ownership is pleased with the direction of the Magic’s rebuild following last season’s decision to blow up the roster by trading veterans Nikola Vucevic, Aaron Gordon, and Evan Fournier.
Since then, Orlando has hired a new head coach (Jamahl Mosley) and drafted two promising young prospects in the 2021 lottery: Jalen Suggs and Franz Wagner. Additionally, 2020 first-rounder Cole Anthony has taken a major step forward, averaging 19.9 PPG through his first 27 games this season, and the Magic are owed two first-round picks and five second-rounders by 2027, having hung onto all of their own draft picks.
The club also should get former lottery picks Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac back from ACL tears at some point this season, and is in a great position to land another top-five pick in 2022 — the Magic’s 7-34 record puts them atop this season’s “reverse standings.”