3. Draft a scorer
The Magic have the 16th pick in this summer’s draft, selecting outside of the lottery for the first time since 2012. Throughout the season it looked like the franchise was crying out for a young guard who could come in and learn from the veteran D.J. Augustin to be the long-term solution at this position.
Instead the front office managed to work out some intriguing solutions on the fly, trading for former first overall pick Markelle Fultz before the trade deadline. Then they went and added Michael Carter-Williams for the stretch run. His defensive play and familiarity with Clifford’s plays from their time together in Charlotte provided a timely boost for their playoff hopes.
Even Isaiah Briscoe looked like a competent backup before an untimely injury, which led to the Magic going out and getting Carter-Williams, hampered his chances of sticking around long-term. This leaves what they will do in the draft open to interpretation, but at this point, going out and drafting a scorer makes complete sense.
Some mock drafts have the Magic taking a shooting guard or small forward with this pick, and if they go ahead and do so, then taking a player who can create his own shot is a must. They ranked 22nd in offensive rating during the regular season (108.1) and outside of Vucevic, struggled to create shots for themselves with alarming regularity.
Their fantastic approach defensively being hampered by a lethargic offensive effort caused them to lose games. Drafting a guard who can play off the ball next to Fultz/Augustin, or a small forward to put alongside some combination of Aaron Gordon, Jonathan Isaac and Mohamed Bamba, would add more balance.
This player would also be the perfect replacement for when Evan Fournier comes off the books. He is owed $34 million over the next two seasons, and while he may come back after that, many fans have been unimpressed by what he’s done for the Magic and he’d have to be brought back on a team-friendly deal. Having a young, cheap replacement ready to step in would be ideal.