5 players for the Orlando Magic to watch at the NBA Draft Combine

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Christian Koloko, Arizona Wildcats

Arizona big man Christian Koloko turned into a strong defender who can attack the paint. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA Draft is on the horizon now as the next phase of draft preparation gets set to begin.

The league’s playoffs are nearing the end and all but eight (for now, but soon to be four) teams are focused on their offseason. The NBA Draft is the first step to that as teams can now schedule workouts with draft prospects and they will soon have the NBA Draft Combine to get their first interactions with the top prospects available.

The NBA Draft Combine begins this weekend, placing all the NBA’s big executives in Chicago. The NBA Draft Lottery will take place Tuesday, finally setting the draft order. And all eyes will then be on the NBA Draft.

This is obviously the day the Magic are waiting on just so they can know where they will pick and what players might be available to them. Either way, Orlando will have to look at all of the top prospects.

The NBA Draft is on the horizon as the Orlando Magic prepare for the next phase and turn their eyes to the NBA Draft Combine.

The Draft Combine is an important step in the process. And now the list of players set to participate is set.

The NBA announced the list of 70-plus prospects who will participate in the NBA Draft Combine:

Most of the top prospects will be there. But they are likely only to get their official measurements and go through the early interview process.

Who the Magic choose to interview — especially beyond the top prospects whom they will probably negotiate either an individual workout or some type of interview later on — will give a big clue to what the Magic intend to do with the No. 32 and 35 picks the team also holds in the second round.

Just because there are perhaps an obvious top six or seven players for the Magic to fill in the first round with their top pick, there is still a lot to do as the Magic try to build their files on future players and prepare for the rest of the draft.

The next week in Chicago is a big one for Orlando then. And there is going to be a lot to evaluate and do while the prospects are all in Chicago.

The Magic obviously have their focus on the top prospects — Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith, Chet Holmgren, Shaedon Sharpe, Keegan Murray, Jaden Ivey and Bennedict Mathurin, to name a few. But there are plenty of other prospects to keep an eye on for the Magic as they enter the next and important interview and workout stage of the draft process.

Here are five players to keep an eye on next week at the NBA Draft Combine.

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