10 Worst free agent signings in Orlando Magic history

Luke Ridnour Orlando Magic (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Luke Ridnour Orlando Magic (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images) /
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Rashard Lewis, Orlando Magic
Rashard Lewis was truly one of the most transformational player sin NBA history as he turned the power forward position into a 3-point threat. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images) /

The 10 worst free agent signings in Orlando Magic history

3. Rashard Lewis

6 years, $118 million in 2017

At his peak, forward Rashard Lewis was a very good player, even an All-Star a couple of times, including once with the Orlando Magic. He was a vital piece to the Magic transforming the league and getting to the Finals in 2009.

But Orlando handed him way too much money and essentially bid against themselves to secure his service. And even his transformation into the model stretch-4 the league would build upon during the next decade was discovered by accident.

The Seattle SuperSonics made Lewis a second-round pick in the 1998 NBA Draft. It was not long before he and Ray Allen were taking the soon-to-be dormant franchise as high as they could, with Lewis making All-Star Game in 2005.

After nine seasons in Seattle, Orlando threw a boatload of cash at Lewis, inking him to a six-year, $118-million deal in 2007. The first thing the Magic did was move him from small forward to power forward — an accident caused by Hedo Turkoglu’s stellar play as a big playmaker and Dwight Howard injuring Tony Battie’s rotator cuff in practice.

He played well, though, and the Magic made the second round of the playoffs for the first time since Shaquille O’Neal left in his first year with the team.

In 2009, he made the All-Star Game for the first time in a Magic uniform and even hit a game-winning shot in the playoffs. The Magic made it all the way to the NBA Finals, where they were soundly beaten by the Los Angeles Lakers.

That was the high point of the Rashard Lewis experience.

The next season, he was suspended for the first 10 games after testing positive for a banned substance. His numbers started trailing off and got even worse the following season. After four years in Orlando, the Magic dealt him to the Washington Wizards for Gilbert Arenas.

Lewis played in the playoffs for Orlando three times and he was very good for them in two of those instances, averaging at least 19 points per game in those respective seasons. His Orlando career was not bad, it just did not live up to the contract he signed.

Toward the end of his time in Orlando, he was briefly the second-highest-paid player in the entire league. Lewis’ exit also ushered the end of an era for some of Orlando’s best teams, especially when Howard became dissatisfied.