Leading up to the 2014 NBA Draft – in the stretch run now — we are going to preview each team in the lottery for their needs. Taking a look at each team’s individual strengths, weaknesses, roster, and what prospects would fit in with their current and future plans.
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Those double-dipping Orlando Magic are back in the lottery preview for the second time with the same team, same needs, and now a higher pick to try to improve. This is only the second top-5 pick for the Magic during their rebuild and they have built up quite the collection of talent already. Will this be the piece to put them over the top?
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Here is the NBA Draft Fast Five.
ONE: 2014-2015 Potential Roster Review
Of all the “bad” teams in the NBA, the Magic seem to have the deepest collection of quality talent. No stars, but depth that could end up blossoming into a better team or manifest itself into a trade down the line for a star. The nucleus of Victor Oladipo and Nikola Vucevic are not the next Kobe and Shaq, but as individual talents do a lot of things really well. Sprinkle in veterans like Jameer Nelson and Arron Afflalo, young athletes like Maurice Harkless and Tobias Harris, and a young coach in Jacque Vaughn to form a team primed for a jump in the coming years.
TWO: Biggest Strengths
There was not a lot to be impressed with this team on the court this season, but they showed good depth at the two-guard position. They have an asset in Afflalo who can be dangled out for more youth in the draft or an impact veteran at a different position. Overall, the teams’ biggest strength at this point in the draft is their collection of assets. With Afflalo, two lottery picks, and a few other similar parts on the roster, they could make a blockbuster trade if one comes to them.
THREE: Biggest Weaknesses
Point guard has been a position of need for this team since Nelson hit his glass ceiling and began to regress. He is a quality point guard and leader, but the team needs to find a dynamic athlete at the one like most teams in the league have to run the offense. Last year they wanted Marcus Smart and instead got Oladipo. This year they have two more opportunities to select a point guard for the future.
FOUR: Odds In The 2014 NBA Draft Lottery
The Magic were sitting pretty with the chance to draft in the Top 3 or potentially move up higher. In fact there was a 46.9 percent chance they stayed in the Top 3 in some capacity, but slid down to the No. 4 slot, which was just a 22.6 percent chance. Now they have to alter their thinking.