Ah, the current laughingstock of the NBA — well, maybe second after the Bobcats — they had their shot to trade Dwight Howard during the season, but wanted to wait until they had WORSE offers to boot him out of Florida. DwightMare is officially over, but how what’s thei off-season grade?
Additions and Subtractions: I’ll skipp the rhetoric, because the only subtraction that fully matters is the fact they lost Dwight Howard and received Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Christian Eyenga, Josh McRoberts, Mo Harkless, and Mikola Vucevic; they also traded Ryan Anderson to the Hornets; and sent Earl Clark and Chris Duhon packing with Dwight.
Let’s just say the Magic screwed themselves when the front office that didn’t take the initiative to trade Dwight before the trade deadline. For some reason, they believed he would stay in a place where he clearly didn’t want to be. You can sugar coat it all you like, and even with Howard acting like a jack ass, the Magic dropped the ball on this one. They have no one to blame, besides Otis Smith, but themselves.
Despite the Dwight Howard trade, they were able to draft Andrew Nicholson and snag Moe Harkless, both are young and skilled. They have “potential” but potential means didily when you had an All-Star center for several years.
Just backtrack to Dwight’s initial back-injury last season, and as bad as that may be, it would seem they are going to be a whole lot worse this season. No franchise player, just a band of scrubs, young guys, and Arron Afflalo. Don’t get me wrong, Arron Afflalo was underrated in Denver, but he will NOT be a franchise player for Orlando.
No matter how Afflalo paints it to the media, he went from a playoff team to a lottery team.
They lost Howard, for goodness’ sake, look past his theatrics, and Orlando lost their defensive presence as well as losing a tenured dominate player.
Sure, they have Jacque Vaughn as coach — taught by Doc Rivers and Popovich — but as Wages Of Wins dictates, you can’t possibly coach a “good” team if you have a team compsed of bad-to-mediocre players. Dwight Howard was there saving grace, and they received — essentially — Afflalo.
Basically, the Orlando Magic will be rebuilding for a few years, and that time could have been shortened if they had a smarter front office last year.
OrLOLando Magic, folks.
Final Grade: F—————–