Magic Rumors

Magic Need Big Leap From Gordon, Defense From Isaac

The Magic have a pile of intriguing, raw projects on board but the only way that those will help them win games this season is if the best among them – 22-year-old Aaron Gordon – takes the next step in his development.

As John Denton of the team’s official site writes, the Magic desperately need Gordon to take another big leap. He had a fantastic start to the 2017/18 season but didn’t finish as strong down the stretch.  They’ll also need him to prove that he can hold up over the course of a full season.

Front Office Close to Hiring Bill Pope

Heat shooting guard Dion Waiters may not be ready for the beginning of the regular season, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Teammate Briante Weber told Jackson that Waiters, who underwent ankle surgery in January, has not participated in any contact work or pickup games with his teammates. With Dwyane Wade continuing to waffle on whether he’ll re-sign with the team, Miami could pursue other free agent options, Jackson adds, with Jamal Crawford, Mario Chalmers and Joe Johnson among a pool of potential targets.

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • Hawks center Dewayne Dedmon, who suffered an avulsion fracture in his left ankle last week, has shed his walking boot, according to a team press release. He will now participate in weight-bearing rehabilitation and then be re-evaluated in two weeks. Dedmon, who will make $7.2MM this season, will be an unrestricted free agent next summer.
  • The Magic are close to hiring Bill Pope as their director of pro personnel, Marc Stein of the New York Times tweets. Pope currently holds a similar position with the Kings.
  • Tomas Satoransky will enter camp as the Wizards’ backup point guard but there’s no guarantee he’ll remain in the rotation, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes in a player profile. Satoransky had trouble holding onto that spot last season and newcomer Austin Rivers and Troy Brown Jr. can play the point behind John Wall if needed. There’s also more depth at the wing, reducing the chances of Satoransky seeing action at those positions, Hughes adds.

Vucevic Expected To Start But Bamba Impressing Team

  • The Magic are expected to open the season with Nikola Vucevic as their starting center, team scribe John Denton writes, but the club will make sure that Mohamed Bamba has plenty of time to demonstrate his potential. According to Denton, the rookie has already “greatly impressed” the squad with the improvement he’s made since the end of the NCAA season.

Dakari Johnson Headed To China

Dakari Johnson, who has been with the Thunder for the past three years, will play in China this season, relays Orazio Cauchi of Sportando. The 22-year-old center has agreed to sign with the Qingdao Eagles, according to a report in the Jinan Times.

Johnson was traded twice this summer before the Grizzlies waived him at the end of August. Oklahoma City shipped him to Orlando in exchange for Rodney Purvis on July 20. Three days later, the Magic sent Johnson and the rights to 2015 second-rounder Tyler Harvey to Memphis for Jarell Martin and cash.

The Grizzlies used the stretch provision to get rid of the final year of Johnson’s contract, creating a cap hit of about $450K for each of the next three seasons.

The 48th pick in the 2015 draft, Johnson spent the first two years of his career in the G League with Oklahoma City Blue. He saw his first action for the Thunder last season, appearing in 31 games and playing about 5 minutes per night.

NBA Teams With Full 20-Man Rosters

Training camps are still two and a half weeks away from opening, but a number of NBA teams have already reached their 20-player offseason roster limits, either officially or unofficially.

The Hawks became the latest team to fill their 20-man roster. Atlanta announced the signing of 19th man R.J. Hunter earlier today, and has also reportedly reached an agreement with veteran center Cole Aldrich, who will fill the 20th spot. The Hawks, of course, could make adjustments to their roster before camps begin, signing or releasing various players, but for now it looks like they’ve chosen their 20-man squad.

Here are the other teams besides Atlanta who have full 20-man offseason rosters:

  • Boston Celtics: After signing three players to camp deals earlier this week, the Celtics now officially have 20 players under contract, including 15 on guaranteed salaries and two on two-way contracts.
  • Dallas Mavericks: Not only are the Mavericks carrying 20 players (15 guaranteed contracts, three non-guaranteed, two two-way), but the team has also reportedly reached an agreement to sign undrafted free agent Donte Ingram to a camp contract. Dallas would have to trade or release a player to finalize Ingram’s deal.
  • Milwaukee Bucks: At the moment, the Bucks have 14 players on guaranteed deals, four on non-guaranteed contracts, and a pair on two-way pacts. However, the club also still has a qualifying offer out to two-way player Xavier Munford and has agreed to sign both Shabazz Muhammad and Christian Wood. More roster moves are coming at some point for Milwaukee.
  • Orlando Magic: The Magic seemingly finalized their offseason roster earlier this week when they inked B.J. Johnson and Gabe York to non-guaranteed Exhibit 10 contracts. Orlando now has 14 players on guaranteed salaries, one with a partial guarantee, three on non-guaranteed deals, and two on two-way contracts.
  • Utah Jazz: Last week’s signing of Trey Lewis may be the last move for Utah before camps get underway. The Jazz now have 14 players on fully guaranteed salaries, four on non-guaranteed deals, and a pair on two-way contracts.

For more details on how many players each team is carrying, be sure to check out our roster counts page, which is updated daily. As that list shows, there are a number of clubs around the NBA with just one spot open on their 20-man rosters.

2018 Offseason In Review: Orlando Magic

Hoops Rumors is breaking down the 2018 offseason for all 30 NBA teams, revisiting the summer’s free agent signings, trades, draft picks, departures, and more. We’ll evaluate each team’s moves from the last several months and look ahead to what the 2018/19 season holds for all 30 franchises. Today, we’re focusing on the Orlando Magic.



  • Acquired the draft rights to Justin Jackson (No. 43 pick) and either the Nuggets’ or Wizards’ 2019 second-round pick (whichever is less favorable) from the Nuggets in exchange for the draft rights to Jarred Vanderbilt (No. 41 pick).
    • Note: The Nuggets’ 2019 second-round pick would be sent to Milwaukee if it falls between 56-60, in which case the Magic would receive the Wizards’ second-rounder.
  • Acquired Timofey Mozgov and Jerian Grant in a three-way trade with the Hornets and Bulls in exchange for Bismack Biyombo (to Hornets), either the Wizards’ or Nuggets’ 2019 second-round pick (whichever is less favorable; to Hornets), and either the Nets’ or Knicks’ 2020 second-round pick (whichever is less favorable; to Hornets).
  • Acquired Dakari Johnson and cash ($1,978,242) from the Thunder in exchange for Rodney Purvis.
  • Acquired Jarell Martin and cash ($1,037,980) from the Grizzlies in exchange for Dakari Johnson and the draft rights to Tyler Harvey.

Draft picks:

  • 1-6: Mohamed Bamba — Signed to rookie contract.
  • 2-35: Melvin Frazier — Signed to three-year, $4.13MM contract. First two years guaranteed. Signed using mid-level exception.
  • 2-43: Justin Jackson — Unsigned.

Departing players:

Other offseason news:

  • Team owner Richard DeVos died at age 92.
  • Hired Steve Clifford as head coach to replace Frank Vogel; finalized coaching staff.
  • Will host Bulls, Jazz in Mexico City games during 2018/19 regular season.

Salary cap situation:

  • Remained over the cap.
  • Carrying approximately $111.6MM in guaranteed salaries.
  • $6.75MM of mid-level exception still available ($1.89MM used on Melvin Frazier and Isaiah Briscoe).
  • Full bi-annual exception ($3.38MM) still available.

Check out the Orlando Magic’s full roster and depth chart at

Story of the summer:

When president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman and general manager John Hammond took over the Magic’s front office in 2017, the expectation was that the two executives would focus on adding length, athleticism, and wingspan to the team’s roster, like Hammond had done in Milwaukee. The new management group has delivered on that expectation, drafting Jonathan Isaac and Mohamed Bamba with its last two lottery picks.

Still, the roster remained caught between two eras, with long-term deals for the likes of Bismack Biyombo and Nikola Vucevic still on the team’s books, and Aaron Gordon – perhaps Rob Hennigan‘s most successful lottery pick in Orlando – eligible for restricted free agency.

While Weltman and Hammond have focused on drafting the best players available that fit their vision for the franchise, those players have overlapped in terms of position with many of the Magic’s highest-paid veterans, creating a logjam in the frontcourt and an odd mix of players on the team’s depth chart.

At some point, the Magic will have to address the roster imbalance, but for now, the club remains focused on compiling as much talent as possible and identifying the long-term keepers from that group. Unlike Hennigan, who went all-in when he acquired Biyombo and Serge Ibaka in 2016, the new Magic decision-makers don’t yet feel any pressure to push for a playoff spot, and the team’s offseason moves reflected their patience.

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Orlando Magic Owner Richard DeVos Dies at 92

Orlando Magic senior chairman Richard DeVos, who has owned the franchise since 1991, died this morning at age 92, the team announced on its website. “Complications from an infection” was listed as the cause of death.

DeVos, who made his fortune as a co-founder of Amway, purchased the team for $85MM. The Magic are currently worth $1.225 billion, according to the latest Forbes report. He turned to the NBA after a failed bid to bring a Major League Baseball expansion team to Orlando and owned three teams in the International Hockey League as well.

The Magic won five division championships and made two trips to the NBA Finals with DeVos as owner. An author and philanthropist, he was inducted into the Orlando Magic Hall of Fame in 2016.

“Mr. DeVos’ boundless generosity, inspirational leadership and infectious enthusiasm will always be remembered,” said Alex Martins, chief executive officer for the Magic. “Simply, he was the team’s No. 1 cheerleader and the best owner that a Magic fan could ever want for their team. When the DeVos Family purchased the Magic, his vision was that the team and organization would serve as a platform to improve the Central Florida community. That legacy will certainly live on, both in the Orlando Magic’s community efforts and philanthropic contributions, as well as in the way we strive to play the game with passion, a strong work ethic and integrity, while also bringing people together from all walks of life.”

Magic Sign Gabe York, B.J. Johnson To Exhibit 10 Deals

The Magic have added a pair of players to their 20-man offseason roster, according to Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel, who reports (via Twitter) that Gabe York and B.J. Johnson have signed Exhibit 10 contracts with the team. The Magic have confirmed the signings in a pair of press releases.

Both players figure to ultimately end up with the Lakeland Magic, Orlando’s G League squad, Robbins notes. Exhibit 10 contracts allow an NBA franchise to give bonuses worth up to $50K to players who are released from the team’s NBA roster and spend at least two months with the team’s G League affiliate.

York, who played his college ball at Arizona, went undrafted in 2016 and has since played for teams in the G League, Italy, and Germany. In 44 career NBAGL games for the Erie BayHawks, the 6’3″ guard averaged 15.8 PPG, 4.2 RPG, and 3.7 APG with a .436/.361/.837 shooting line. He participated in a free agent camp with the Jazz earlier this summer.

As for Johnson, he completed his college career this past spring, so this deal with the Magic will be his first professional contract. In his senior year at La Salle, the 6’7″ shooting guard recorded 20.8 PPG and 8.3 RPG, earning Second Team All-Atlantic 10 honors.

The Magic had two openings on their roster prior to signing York and Johnson, so they’re now at the offseason max. The club is carrying 14 players on fully guaranteed salaries, two on two-way contracts, one (Isaiah Briscoe) with a partial guarantee, and three on non-guaranteed deals.

Khem Birch On Canada's Camp Roster For WC Qualifiers

Terrence Ross Ready To Improve This Season

Magic guard Terrence Ross is about to enter the final season of a three-year, $31.5MM rookie contract extension that he signed in November, 2015. And according to Dan Savage of, Ross, 27, is intent on improving upon an injury-riddled 2017/18 season that limited him to 24 games.

“It’s always a big year any time your contract is coming to an end,” Ross explained. “You just want to go out there know that you’re 100 percent and play as well as you can, play with confidence and more importantly, help the (Magic) win.”

Regardless of his motivation, both Magic High Performance Director David Tenney and new head coach Steve Clifford appear to be satisfied with what they’re seeing out of Ross so far this offseason.

“He’s done a consistent amount of work this entire offseason, not just with (the Magic), but with his personal trainers as well,” said Tenney. “The consistency of doing stuff multiple times per week, coming here at night and doing stuff on his own, the consistent workload from the beginning of June until now, is really starting to pay off and you can see that he’s really looked a lot sharper.”

According to Savage, Ross’ conditioning and strength-training efforts are paying off on the court. In a recent pick-up game with Magic teammates and other NBA players, Ross knocked down six consecutive shots from various parts of the floor.

“Every day – he’s (even) come in on a couple of Saturdays,” Clifford said. “He’s really committed himself. I think his conditioning level is good, but his game is getting into rhythm, you can see it when he works out and you can see it when they (he and his Magic teammates) play.”