Magic start off improved in ESPN Power Rankings

Bleacher Report
Bleacher Report

Yes, today is Magic Media Day. That means it is time for wild predictions and unbridled optimism.

Everyone is 0-0 theoretically so there is no reason to feel the despair that comes with the prospect of a long, rebuilding, improving season from a young team. Those Playoff dreams are still out there. And anything can happen.

For those of us who are a bit rooted in reality and tempering expectations any improvement from the young players and the continued growth of the franchise as the team builds toward a sustainable championship model is what we are looking for.

As training camp opens, it appears this progress will come to fruition.

In the first edition of Marc Stein's Power Rankings for ESPN.com, he has the Magic at No. 24 citing Rob Hennigan's skill in beginning this long rebuild by amassing young talent and selling it to the fans:

It's not often that the committee has to rethink things, but initial cool reviews of the Magic's post-Dwight Howard plan might have been premature. GM Hennigan has amassed coveted youngsters (Vucevic, Tobias Harris, Oladipo, Harkless) and managed to sell his fan base on a patient approach.

Maybe it is a lot of teams going through a rebuild at one time and the Magic being a bit ahead of the curve with the direction of their franchise rather than just starting. The Celtics, Bucks and 76ers all fell below the Magic as the season gets set to begin. That 2014 Draft is awful tempting.

In any case, most people believe the Magic will improve upon their 20-62 record from last year. They will most likely not be the worst team in the NBA. They will continue to show improvement. How much improvement is another matter entirely.

That is what we will be asking at Media Day later today and finding out in the next seven months. Who knows? Maybe longer.

Philip Rossman-Reich

About Philip Rossman-Reich

Philip Rossman-Reich is the managing editor for Crossover Chronicles and Orlando Magic Daily. You can follow him on twitter @OMagicDaily

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