5 Orlando Magic players with the most to gain from the 2024 NBA Playoffs

The Orlando Magic are at the tail end of their best season since the Dwight Howard era. While they have made some strides in terms of earning national respect, there is still much to build on and work for. They will have a lot of questions to answer this postseason.

The Orlando Magic are preparing to burst onto the postseason stage and they have a lot to prove in their first trip.
The Orlando Magic are preparing to burst onto the postseason stage and they have a lot to prove in their first trip. / Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports
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Orlando Magic players with the most to gain from the 2024 NBA Playoffs

Another franchise cornerstone: Jalen Suggs

Jalen Suggs is one of the few Orlando Magic players who is probably already a household name. But more so for his time in college at Gonzaga and being one of the biggest stars of the 2021 NCAA tournament and season.

His half-court bank shot at the buzzer to beat UCLA in the Final Four is a clip we will see every March until the end of time.

But for the Magic, Suggs is still making a name for himself on the NBA court through is his third professional season.

Drafted as a combo guard into a crowded backcourt, there were questions as to whether Suggs would run the 1 or the 2 in Orlando and if he would be able to develop sharing minutes with Cole Anthony and Markelle Fultz.

Fast forward to the present day, and Jalen Suggs is THE starting shooting guard for the Magic starting in all 64 of his appearances this season. He has become one of the best defenders in the league and is the heart of this team.

This transition to the starting lineup has mostly been propelled by his high energy on defense and his ability to improve his 3-point percentage each year, culminating in a respectable 39.8 percent entering Wednesday's game. He is also shooting 46.4 percent from the field in total.

For Suggs, this postseason is not so much about working his way into future All-Star conversations.

Rather, Suggs has a lot to gain by proving he is the present and FUTURE starting shooting guard in Orlando.

While he cannot lose that position this postseason, he can make great strides toward it. Especially since Orlando could be ready to make a splashy trade or free agency move this offseason depending on how the playoffs go.

No Suggs probably will not become the face of the franchise this postseason, but if he performs well or puts on a show, he can join Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner as the future pieces to the organization's long-term success.

With the new financial rules put in place by last season's updated CBA, homegrown talent would be the preferable way to build a franchise so Orlando will be evaluating his play. We will see if Suggs can do enough to prove he is the man of the future in Orlando.