The 2024 NBA season is quickly coming into focus for the Orlando Magic.
We are officially two weeks to Media Day and the start of training camp. Most of the players have already returned to Orlando — Paolo Banchero shared a video from T-Mobile Park in Seattle during a Seattle Mariners game and Franz and Moe Wagner are still celebrating their gold medal at the FIBA World Cup in Germany according to their social media posts this weekend — and they are getting locked in on what is a most-anticipated season.
Fans got their chance to be excited for the team’s anniversary season with the unveiling of the team’s new throwback jerseys for the occasion. The team got a taste of what the players might be like with the FIBA World Cup.
Ultimately though, what everyone is eager to see is how the team builds off the final three-quarters of last season and is eager to see if this team can launch itself into the postseason.
The Orlando Magic are expected to take a big leap into the postseason chase this year. They will have to start with their division rivals and press advantages over them all to climb the standings.
Orlando never could recover from its 5-20 start to last season. But the team still scored some big victories and gained respect around the league. The Magic proved to be a difficult matchup — as one opposing scout put it at one point last year, the Magic were the only team actually living the positionless fad that everyone claimed was sweeping through the NBA.
The Magic may try something more traditional, but their talent level, depth and size are the defining traits of this team. It is what makes the Magic a tough out.
Orlando certainly expects to compete for a postseason spot this season. That is the path the team is trying to walk this year. And they will have to topple some tough competition to get there.
The place to start then is with the teams the Magic will see most often.
Divisions may not matter much with conference standings so much more important. But these are still the teams the Magic are guaranteed to see four times each year. And they have to beat these teams anyway.
Orlando did beat all these teams at least once last season. And the Magic certainly still retain advantages over everyone in the Southeast Division. And it is a sign of where this team is building and what its ultimate strengths may prove to be.