Orlando Magic Daily Mailbag Volume 40: The winds of change are near

2 of 7
Markelle Fultz, Orlando Magic, LA Clippers
Markelle Fultz follow his brilliant triple double by showing he is still a rookie in a lot of ways. (Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Among the reasons some fans feel the Orlando Magic could reset their table a little bit this season is that they are getting set to make two major investments in the team. The kind of investments that will actually lock the team into a certain path for a long time.

This could be the Magic’s last chance to significantly shift the roster to accentuate and support those players.

Orlando’s “core” players appear to be around Jeff Weltman’s biggest acquisitions — draft picks Jonathan Isaac, Mohamed Bamba and Chuma Okeke and trade acquisition Markelle Fultz. These are the players the Magic want to build around most right now. And the team needs to work to put them in the best position to succeed.

That means preparing to invest in them too. In Jonathan Isaac and Markelle Fultz’s case, the time to make a major investment in them has arrived this summer.

The question is about Fultz, but it is important to address Isaac here too. Both players do not have clear-cut cases for what the Magic should do and how they should proceed. But it still seems like a safe bet the Magic will push forward with both when the time comes.

With Isaac, the decision to invest is made difficult by the fact Isaac will have played only one full season of his four years under his rookie contract. At this point, though, if the Magic are committed to bringing him back, they should try to get something done before the season — as a sign of good faith and belief, allowing Isaac to rehab without concern over his contract status.

I would try to get Isaac to take a deal in the $17 million per year range. Something similar to what Evan Fournier got. It certainly is not what he would have gotten had he been healthy enough to play, but a four-year deal would give him security and show belief.

Fultz’s question is a much different one.

Unless Orlando is certain of what he can be and the growth he will show in the 2021 season, the team is probably better off (again as a sign of good faith) keeping an open dialogue with Fultz and letting his 2021 season set his market.

I do not suspect Fultz would take meetings with other teams or get an offer sheet that would hamper the Magic’s cap sheet. The way Jeff Weltman seems to work, he will be pretty up front with Fultz and his camp about their intentions and take care of him if he is truly a part of the team’s plans.

Fultz certainly should turn down any extension talk before the season, hoping to prove his true value over the course of the season. That could easily see him bump up from around a $10-12 million per year salary to north of $15 million.