Orlando Magic Trade Value Column 2021

Evan Fournier is likely heading out of Orlando after seven seasons with the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
Evan Fournier is likely heading out of Orlando after seven seasons with the Orlando Magic. (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images) /
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Evan Fournier, Orlando Magic
Evan Fournier had a lot to prove as he tried to get the Orlando Magic back to the playoffs. (Photo by Harry Aaron/Getty Images) /

Category IV — If you keep twisting my arm, I might say maybe

7. Markelle Fultz (4 years, $62.3 million, Team Option in 2024)

Last Year: 2

Markelle Fultz was on track to be the comeback story of the year. Building off his solid first full year in the lead, the Orlando Magic felt they could keep building and trust Fultz to lead the team to its next step. The plan was to trust him a bit more to run the team and get the team moving in the right direction.

Through the first eight games, he was doing that. He averaged 12.9 points per game and 5.4 assists per game on a 41.3-percent effective field goal percentage. There were still hiccups and his shooting was tailing off after a hot start. But who can forget the thrilling comeback he helped complete in Washington early in the season.

There are plenty of skeptics about Fultz and his future development. Can he be the starting point guard on a title team? That is a fair question. He is young enough to figure it all out.

But all of this is on pause. He tore his ACL eight games into the season after signing a three-year extension. Now one of those seasons will be spent regaining strength and getting back to form.

Fultz has to prove himself all over again.

6. Evan Fournier (1 year, $17.2 million)

Last Year: 4

Evan Fournier has had back-to-back career scoring seasons. Averaging 19.1 points per game this season after 18.5 last year, Fournier has become a model of efficiency and good shooting on a team that has lacked that.

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Bleacher Report's star trade idea finally rids Knicks of Evan Fournier
Bleacher Report's star trade idea finally rids Knicks of Evan Fournier /

Daily Knicks

  • Should the Boston Celtics bring back former trade deadline splash? Hardwood Houdini
  • Evan Fournier finally accepts Knicks may not trade him before season starts Daily Knicks
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  • 2023 FIBA World Cup Day 3 Recap: France eliminated, the Dennis Schroder show, and Karl-Anthony Towns defeats Italy FanSided
  • Knicks' Evan Fournier needs to do more to fulfill World Cup "launchpad" hope Daily Knicks
  • Letting him go could be the most costly and most difficult player to replace on a team bereft of shooting. Even with his playoff struggles — and unlike Nikola Vucevic, he did not get the benefit of a redemption series because of an injury and an illness that slowed him down inside the bubble — Evan Fournier is still a valuable player.

    Like so many of the Magic’s best players, the issue is more about how the Magic have had to rely on him for more than he can truly provide. Orlando has had to use him as a primary ball-handler and scorer which has taken him completely out of place.

    And like so many of the Magaic’s best players, it just feels like everything has gone stale. Fournier can probably sense he is not part of this team’s long-term future in the same way. And no one should ever take a pay cut or a lesser role from the same employer (free life advice).

    According to Tim McMahon of ESPN.com, Fournier has let it be known he will not re-sign with the team this offseason (although Fournier disputed this report himself on Twitter). That might as well be the same as a trade request. With the Magic out of the playoff picture (or fading quickly from it), there is no sense in retaining Fournier. They do not need him to “save” this season.

    Unfortunately, Fournier’s expiring contract turns him into a rental for many teams and thus limits his market. A lot of playoff teams certainly could use a shooter and playmaker like Fournier in a more secondary role than the Magic could afford.

    Orlando is probably hoping for a young rotation player or at least one first-round pick (outside the Lottery) in return.