What it will take for the Orlando Magic to move their key players

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Nikola Vucevic, Orlando Magic, Boston Celtics, Tristan Thompson
Nikola Vucevic has played like an All-Star this year and trading him would mean the Orlando Magic are ready to restart completely. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports /

Nikola Vucevic

Ask anyone around the league and they are seemingly circling for Orlando Magic All-Star center Nikola Vucevic. Even a current of fans are hoping the Magic at least entertain offering Vucevic in a trade as a way to get him onto a contending team.

That is a nice sentiment for sure. But it would still take a lot for the Magic to move off of Vucevic.

Jeff Weltman has made it clear during his tenure that he believes teams develop best when put in winning environments. He is not planning on doing a massive rebuild. And, to be sure, the likely deals that teams would pursue involving Vucevic are going to force the team to start almost completely over.

The general thought however around the league appears to be that Orlando believes it can make a return to the playoffs quickly by bringing back Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac to virtually the same core.

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  • It cannot be exactly the same core. But Vucevic is the best player. He gives the team the most stability on both ends and the best chance to win. That is the ultimate goal.

    The hope for the team’s development then is that Vucevic can provide enough stability to get the team back into the playoff picture and then maybe one day give way to the team’s next star. They need someone to hand the baton off to one of the younger players when they are ready.

    Right now, it does not seem like any of them are ready. That makes Vucevic vital to the team’s short-term future (at least until his contract runs out). This is a decision the Magic do not have to be in a rush to make.

    This does not mean Orlando should not be willing to listen to offers. The Magic should be assessing everything that is available to them. They are not in a position to pass anything up.

    But for Vucevic? They should be looking for a star to replace him. Or at least someone that will be a core piece of the team in the short-term at a minimum and, hopefully, for the long-term too.

    Right now, Vucevic is a foundational piece of the puzzle for the Magic. They should treat him as such.

    Potential Trade Partners: Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors, Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors

    Potential Trade Targets: Terry Rozier, James Wiseman, Spencer Dinwiddie, DeMar DeRozan, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kelly Oubre, Andrew Wiggins, Lauri Markkanen, OG Anunoby, Brook Lopez

    Nikola Vucevic isn't flashy, but he's an All-Star. dark. Next

    The trade deadline is March 25.