The Orlando Magic are seeking ways to get better and potentially move up in the Draft. Doing that will be expensive as they seek a framework to move up.
That might be a statement that is true every year for every team. Every team wants the chance to get the best players in the Draft. The question is always about what they are willing to give up to get them and the willingness for teams to trade off the top pick.
That is what makes this year’s Draft so interesting then.
The conditions all seem there for a trade to happen. The Magic are a team in something resembling transition as they try to map out their future with a newer core of players and the top of this Draft is not full of players teams want to keep.
Not to mention, nobody has money in free agency nor are there free agents most teams would likely try to pursue.
That is why there are so many rumors about the Minnesota Timberwolves listening to trade offers for the top pick. Or the seeming inevitability that the Golden State Warriors will trade the second overall pick.
It does not help that nobody has any good sense about who will fall where in this Draft. There are players that could go anywhere from the top-3 to outside the Lottery. It is a wide-ranging draft with prospects that teams are interested in but not overly excited about.
After five months of sitting on their hands waiting for the Draft to take place, everyone is antsy to get this thing going. And it could be a fairly active draft night.
The Magic certainly have every reason to be active. The team needs to begin shifting its roster to a new era while they look to remain competitive. They need some young talent. And with only the mid-level exception available to them in free agency, the team needs to find new players to add skill.
And, the dirty secret for the team is they already have a high-level draft pick ready to join the team in Chuma Okeke.
But finding a trade is more difficult than it sounds. It is not as easy as popping in players into the Trade Machine and asking, “Who says no?”
The devil is really in the details. And ultimately, it always takes two teams to make a deal.
But the first place to start is to have something each team wants. To make a deal, teams have to target and court each other.
So if the Magic really do want to move up, who are they targeting and what might they have to give up?
Before even picking up the phone, then, teams have to understand if there is a framework for a deal — players that can be swapped for each other and make sense for every team. From there, they can fill in the details necessary to get to the finish line.
So as a start, let’s look at the potential frameworks for deals between teams ahead of the Magic and assess which teams the Magic might actually deal with.
Reminder, what we are discussing are frameworks for deals. The deals proposed are not reflective of any reporting or even reflective of deals that are legal. They are merely starting points for a discussion with details that need to be filled in.