The Orlando Magic will be without their All-Star center, Nikola Vucevic, for at least one month after the 29 year old suffered a sprained right ankle against the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.
Vucevic has averaged 17.1 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks per game through 14 games this season.
The Magic have some depth at the guard and forward positions, but their depth at center is limited to Khem Birch, who has appeared in five games this season, and Mohamed Bamba. The No. 6 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, Bamba missed a good chunk of his rookie season with a stress reaction in his lower leg and he hasn’t been able to make up for lost time in his sophomore season.
In 13.4 minutes per game, Bamba is averaging 3.8 points a night on 33.9 percent shooting from the field, including 40 percent of his two-point attempts, to go along with 4.2 rebounds and a block per game. Going into the draft, he was considered an extremely raw prospect, but even with that in mind, the flashes have been far and few between.
Bamba could shine in a more featured role, but it’s plausible that the Magic will shuffle through Birch and some forwards like Aaron Gordon, Al-Farouq Aminu, and Jonathan Isaac before committing to him at center. Isaac is an especially intriguing option, as the 6’11 forward is tied No. 2 in the league in total blocks.