Orlando Magic Daily 2022 NBA Draft Big Board 2.0: Time to consider needs

Jabari Smith could be the next coming of Rashard Lewis and the top pick in the 2022 NBA Draft. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
Jabari Smith could be the next coming of Rashard Lewis and the top pick in the 2022 NBA Draft. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports /
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Shaedon Sharpe, Kentucky Wildcats
Shaedon Sharpe sat out the year for Kentucky but could still be a top pick for the draft. Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports /

2022 Orlando Magic Daily Big Board 2.0


Slowly but surely, everyone is starting to get to know who Shaedon Sharpe is.

No one would blame casual fans for asking who is this guy that is getting ranked so high apparently from a college but did not play at all last season. Sharpe’s situation was certainly a bizarre one — although you cannot blame the guy for being overeager, it is the stupid NCAA that cannot seem to get things straight.

What is becoming apparent is that NBA scouts have seen and studied enough to make him one of the top picks in the draft. The initial notion that he would return to Kentucky appears to be going by the wayside.

Sharpe held his first workout through his agency Monday at the NBA Draft Combine. Yes, you will spot Jeff Weltman and John Hammond front and center in the front row:

Sharpe is a powerful leaper, as the workout video shows. But he can get up quickly in traffic and finish off two-foot jumps after rebounds too. He also has NBA range already.

At 6-foot-6, Sharpe should have some versatility to spare. The question is whether the year away from playing competitive games will help or hurt him and how quickly he can get back up to game speed.

Still, there are a lot of people who believe Sharpe would have been the top pick in this draft if he had played. And for all the same reasons the Magic need a guy like Banchero, if one of those top three guys are gone, Sharpe is consistently the pick.

Orlando needs a wing who can break down defenses and score at multiple levels badly.

I continue to flip-flop as the last guy in this top tier for the NBA Draft.

I will stick with Jaden Ivey as a way to continue the theme of the Magic’s biggest needs.

That is indeed the tension of needs the Magic will have: What is more important for the team? Shooting or finding their star to direct the team?

If the answer is shooting then Iowa’s Keegan Murray should be here. But I think it is also abundantly clear the Magic need that star to center their offense around. That will help all the other role players fill in.

I am admittedly lower on Jaden Ivey than everyone else. He is a dynamic finisher at the rim and a great scorer. But he struggles at times to hit shots from all three levels and is not a great playmaker or passer.

If the Magic land at five and their option is Ivey, I might still go with Murray over him.

The biggest concern with Ivey and the Magic is fit. The Magic still seem very invested in Markelle Fultz as their starting point guard. He has at least earned an opportunity to see how far he can take it. And they just drafted Jalen Suggs, who at least deserves the chance to grow from his rookie year.

That makes it hard to see the Magic taking a high-usage guard like Ivey unless there are some major changes in store. Then again, talent should win at this stage.