2024 Orlando Magic Trade Value Column: From sellers to buyers

The Orlando Magic's posture entering this year's trade deadline has changed. For the first time, they are going out on the market looking for ways to improve their team. That starts with a careful evaluation of what they have and what they are willing to give up.

A lot of focus for the Orlando Magic at the trade deadline is on the future at point guard and what the team does with Markelle Fultz.
A lot of focus for the Orlando Magic at the trade deadline is on the future at point guard and what the team does with Markelle Fultz. / Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports
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2024 Orlando Magic Trade Value Column

2. Franz Wagner (2-years, $12.5 million) -- Last Year: 2nd

It is good that this article is coming after Sunday's game against the Detroit Pistons. It sometimes feels like we forget how good Franz Wagner is and can be. We sometimes forget how dynamic and aggressive he can be and how quickly he can pile up points.

Everything feels so simple for Wagner. His ability to knife through the lane and score at the basket is so easy. It is easy to take for granted. His consistency at such a young age is still downright impressive.

It sometimes does not seem like it because Wagner has not shot the ball as well as he did in his first two seasons, but Wagner is averaging 20 points per game. The Magic are set to have their first duo averaging 20.0 points per game since Shaquille O'Neal and Anfernee Hardaway in 1996.

We should be talking a whole lot more about Wagner and what he can become. His first call to the All-Star Game is surely coming once the Magic climb into competing for homecourt advantage in the Playoffs. Wagner is game enough to get there.

Wagner is untouchable. The Magic view him as a future star on this team. And a max extension is undoubtedly coming this offseason.

That point is probably why the Magic should feel some urgency to make a big move sooner rather than later -- whether that is Dejounte Murray, Anfernee Simons or something bigger for the offseason. The Magic's time of having unlimited cap room is running out.

Wagner has earned that max contract. The Magic should give him as much as they can without thinking twice. And that is a testament to how good Wagner is for this team.