Orlando Magic Shooting Month: 5 Magic 3-point shooters before their times

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Orlando Magic, Pat Garrity, Cleveland Cavaliers
Pat Garrity lasted a long time with the Orlando Magic and helped preview the stretch-4 revolution. (Photo credit should read TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images) /

5 Orlando Magic shooters before their times

Pat Garrity

The real evolution in 3-point shooting in the NBA came when power forwards began to stretch out to the 3-point line. In the age of hand-checking and more physical play, teams needed a second post player to set extra screens and be an enforcer to protect big men from the physical play.

Orlando experimented with some forwards who could shoot beforehand. But never to the 3-point line.

Horace Grant was a solid shooter out to 18 feet and was money from the top of the free throw circle. Jeff Turner was even a better shooter than people remembered. If he had been given permission and time to develop a 3-point shot, he could have been among the first stretch-4s in the league (shout out to the original modern stretch-4 Sam Perkins).

Orlando was at the vanguard of the stretch-4 revolution with Rashard Lewis. But Pat Garrity may be the real first stretch-4 for the Magic.

Garrity came along just as the league was loosening its physicality that would open the door for players like him to thrive. Garrity was not a physical specimen at all but his 3-point shooting made him unique. Teams just did not really know what to do with a 6-foot-10 forward capable of hitting from the outside.

Garrity played nine seasons with the Magic averaging 7.4 points per game, topping off at 11.1 points per game in the 2002 season. Considering the style of play at the time was stand around and watch the superstar work one on one — and with the Magic’s roster and Tracy McGrady at the time, that was probably the right offense to run — having a player like Garrity to spread the floor was a real weapon.

Garrity shot 39.8-percent from beyond the arc, including three seasons shooting better than 40 percent from deep.

He was not just a stand-still shooter. He was good at coming around screens for a player of his size. And he was plenty clutch too, with his share of big shots for the Magic in his time.

Garrity was truly ahead of his time. If he had come around in the late 2000s and early 2010s, he would have been one of the most dangerous players in the league. He would have fit perfectly with the 2009 Magic in his prime.

He may not have had the overall athleticism to compete in today’s NBA. There was a narrow window for his success. In this time, he came just before his skills would have peaked in value.