With rumors going around the league that the Minnesota Timberwolves are looking for a veteran big man to help their frontcourt, we wonder if the Wolves and Magic are a perfect match.
The Orlando Magic have made it clear they will be looking for ways to bolster their roster as they attempt to reach the Playoffs this season.
One of the main reasons why the Magic are interested in making a trade is due to their lack of a true first scoring option. Another reason is the team’s inability to play consistent basketball throughout the first two months of the season.
Entering the season, the Magic knew their roster was not constructed in a way in which they could succeed long term. A trade was going to be needed sooner or later in order to bring in some balance to a team loaded with talented big men that want to play starter minutes each game.
When the Magic acquired Serge Ibaka on draft night and then proceeded to sign Bismack Biyombo during free agency, Nikola Vucevic quickly became the odd man out. Vucevic has been by far the most consistent player and some may say the best player for the Magic in the post-Dwight Howard era. But he is not someone without his flaws.
After the acquisitions of Ibaka and Biyombo during the offseason, Vucevic became a luxury player. And, thus, one who could bring in the assets that the Magic need in order to win now.
There are many teams in the league who are in need of a big man that can help them win now. Teams like the Portland Trail Blazers, Boston Celtics and Minnesota Timberwolves are just some of the teams rumored to be looking for a big man that can help them solidify their roster.
The Timberwolves are by far the most intriguing team on that list. The Timberwolves entered the season with high expectations after hiring head coach Tom Thibodeau and drafting yet another talented young player in Kris Dunn. to go with their exciting young core of Andrew Wiggins, Karl-Anthony Towns and Zach LaVine.
Early in the season, the Timberwolves have not looked like the team many expected to see this season. While they have been fun to watch, the team has not produced on the court.
The Timberwolves currently have a 10-21 record, which is the third worst record in the Western Conference.
On a recent True Hoop podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that the Timberwolves are “looking to trade for a frontcourt player.” Thibodeau has already expressed his disappointment and it seems he is ready to go out in the trade market and search for a big man that he can pair up with Karl-Anthony Towns.
What is more interesting is Ric Bucher of Bleacher Report reports the Timberwolves may be willing to trade one of their young stars in order to acquire a veteran big man. If that is the case, the Magic and Timberwolves should be on the phone talking right now.
The two players that the Magic should be pursuing at all cost should be Zach LaVine and Andrew Wiggins. It seems unlikely the Timberwolves would be willing to part with Wiggins, a future star and former No. 1 overall pick. But, then again, it is hard to say exactly how Thibodeau wants to puts his team together.
LaVine and Wiggins are exactly the types of players who the Magic are looking for. Both of them can create their own shot and they are both able to hit the 3-point shot. The best part is if the Magic are able to acquire one of them, they do not have to put a complete stop to their youth movement as both of these players are very young and still years away from reaching their prime.
It would take a lot to acquire either LaVine or Wiggins, but the Magic do have the assets to put together a solid trade offer. The Magic have draft picks, expiring contracts and the veteran frontcourt players the Timberwolves desire.
The Magic have the ability to put together a trade offer that the Timberwolves simply cannot refuse.
It would be very unlikely the Timberwolves part ways with Wiggins this early in his tenure with the team, but LaVine is a player the Timberwolves could part ways for the right offer. LaVine could help Orlando in many ways since he is able to play both the point guard and the shooting guard position.
LaVine is currently averaging a career-best 21.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game. he is also having a career year shooting the ball. He is currently shooting 47 percent from the field and 41 percent from beyond the arc.
The Magic would need to get extremely creative in putting together an offer that would interest the Timberwolves to part ways with one of their best young players. The offer would need to be a package that includes Nikola Vucevic, Mario Hezonja, an expiring contract and possibly a future draft pick.
Such a trade offer should attract the Timberwolves to at least pick up the phone and engage in a trade discussion.
Some fans may fear giving up Vucevic and Hezonja plus a draft pick may be too much. But the reality is the Magic would have an opportunity to add a young player with tremendous upside to a team that is lacking a first scoring option. The only way to acquire such a player is by overpaying.
Additionally, just for the fun of it, just imagine a fast break with Aaron Gordon and LaVine running on each wing. Athleticism-wise, it would be the closest thing to the Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady duo back in the days with the Toronto Raptors.
The trade deadline is still two months away, so a lot could change between now and then. The one thing that is not going to change is the need the Magic have a first option on offense and Thibodeau’s desire to acquire a solid big man to play beside Towns.
The Magic and the Timberwolves have an opportunity to help each other make a trade that would have an impact on their team immediately and also in the long run.