4 early options for Orlando Magic’s pick from the Chicago Bulls

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James Bouknight, UConn Huskies
James Bouknight is one of the best scorers in the Draft class. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports /

James Bouknight, UConn

Offensive weaknesses have continued to hold back the Orlando Magic. The team has the third-worst offensive rating this season, scoring just 105.4 points per 100 possessions.

Even when healthier and with the previous core still in place, Steve Clifford’s team ranked just 23rd for the same stat last season despite making the playoffs. A large amount of the responsibility to create offense was placed on Nikola Vucevic’s shoulders.

But with the rebuild underway and an extremely young team in place, adding someone like James Bouknight could help ensure that similar offensive woes do not continue with this new-look Magic.

The UConn guard is a go-to bucket, averaging 18.7 points per game this season thanks to his well-polished offensive game. Bouknight’s ability to get past his man using his quick first step and solid handle, partnered with a smooth jumper and ability to score off the dribble makes him really difficult to guard. He even has that much sought after step-back in his locker.

He has demonstrated an ability to score in a variety of ways during his time at college, and that could be of enormous benefit to the Magic.

Orlando Magic
Orlando Magic /

Orlando Magic

Currently, Terrence Ross is really the only guy on the roster that can consistently create something from nothing and score difficult buckets. Adding Bouknight gives the team another option to lean on offensively.

The concerns are mainly around his ability to stay healthy. The 20-year-old played just 15 regular-season games this year and often missed time with various issues. After a nightmare spell with injuries this year, Orlando might not want to take the risk on someone who hasn’t been able to stay consistently healthy.

His shooting must also become more consistent. Bouknight made just 29.3-percent of his 3-point attempts last season, though his free-throw rate of 77.8-percent does provide some encouragement moving forward.

Overall, there is a lot to like about the young guard. He can do things a lot of other guys his age cannot and could become a solid scorer in the NBA, even if that might well come at the cost of inconsistency during his early professional career.