Killian would provide a replacement at the shooting guard position and could end up being the Orlando Magic’s two-guard alongside Markelle Fultz.
In recent history, the Orlando Magic’s notable draft picks have been Jonathan Isaac, Wesley Iwundu, Mohamed Bamba and Chuma Okeke under Jeff Weltman.
None of these picks have yet to pan out fully. Only Isaac has established himself as a starting-caliber player, although he has missed two of his three seasons.
He has embodied the potential all four players have and his injuries represent the issues they and the team still have to resolve. Isaac is likely to miss the 2021 season nursing his torn ACL. Bamba has yet to finish a full season, whether it has been due to injury or COVID-related. And Okeke is coming off a torn ACL. Then finally, Iwundu has yet to find himself a consistent role on this team.
This illustrates how important the 15th pick is going to be for the Magic this offseason. The Magic certainly are in a position to potentially move up. It might be something they must do to kickstart the next phase of their rebuild, no matter the cost.
There are a lot of players they could target. But everyone knows Weltman has a penchant for taking players with length and athleticism. That could be a lot of players in this draft, including guard Killian Hayes.
Hayes is a 6-foot-5 combo guard who played for Ratiopharm Ulm in Germany. Hayes would provide much-needed shooting for Orlando as he shot 39-percent from beyond the arc on 4.1 attempts per game in EuroCup competition. Overall he shot 45.5-percent from the field and an outstanding 90.9-percent from the free-throw line.
With Evan Fournier’s uncertain future, Killian Hayes would provide a replacement at the shooting guard position and could end up being the two-guard going forward alongside Markelle Fultz in the backcourt.
As he played overseas instead of college, he already has experience in the professional scene. He can create his shot, which is something Orlando is desperate for, and as he has played the point guard position primarily, he is going to be a good ball handler and another option on a pick and roll or as a spot-up shooter.
Hayes projects as an intriguing point guard prospect. But his star prospects are not particularly strong.
While he can create his shot and he is able to get into the defense, he heavily prefers his left hand and struggles to attack using his right hand. To be successful in the NBA, he is going have to develop his right hand to be able to score effectively in this league.
He is also inconsistent on the defensive end. He is not the best athlete, so the ability to be a solid defender in this league will be based on his motor and the effort he shows on that end of the floor. However, he has great size, especially with a 6-foot 8-inches wingspan, which has the potential to be a solid defender.
During the combine, Hayes stated that he was working on his body to be better on the defensive end of the floor. He has been watching tape to watch his mistakes, such as turning the ball over.
Those are all things a young player can work on and improve upon. His physical profile and early skills suggest he can make an immediate impact and stick around in a meaningful role in the league.
Overall, Hayes makes a lot of sense for the Magic as he can be a long-term option at the shooting guard position and could be an option to replace Fournier if the Magic choose to move on.
The big problem is that Hayes is likely to go in the lottery and will not last until pick 15. Hayes is a prospect Orlando will likely have to trade up for.
But Hayes presents the upside and potential that could make him the shooting guard of the future in Orlando. He would be another creator for this Magic team, and it will open up the offense in the short term as well.
If the front office believes that Hayes can be a piece that propels this team, then Orlando should move up to take him.
Hayes will provide an offensive boost that this team needs, and with a 6-foot-8 wingspan, Hayes has the size that gives him the potential to be a good defender in this league. But Hayes is probably going to go in the lottery, so Hayes would most likely be someone that Orlando will have to trade up for.