Orlando Magic 2024 NBA Draft Preview: A weak class, but still lots of options

The Orlando Magic have a loaded young roster and ambitions of improving their playoff standing not just this year but next year too. The 2024 NBA Draft class is not considered particularly strong but there are still options for the Magic as they do their draft prep.

The Orlando Magic will draft much later this year and should still have plenty of options to fill important needs like Tennessee forward Dalton Knecht.
The Orlando Magic will draft much later this year and should still have plenty of options to fill important needs like Tennessee forward Dalton Knecht. / Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports
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Intro to the 2024 Draft Class

Team Size

Philip Rossman-Reich, Orlando Magic Daily: Obviously there are some shooting options, but also is there that perfect fit they are looking for.

The Orlando Magic tend to want size. It's the running joke in the league. Magic fans joke about it. I think a lot of media covering the league like to joke about it. The Magic love their length and love their size. Who is the all-Jeff Weltman team player in this draft who is the rangy forward with arms that are longer than humanly possible?

Richard Stayman, Locked on NBA Big Board: With the length, that's hwere it gets tough. I'm trying to think of who has like crazy wingspan and everything.

I can't remember if Ulrich Chomche (of the NBA Academy Showcase, currently projected as a second-round pick), I want to say he has a really good frame. He's 6-foot-11. He is someone who has long arms.

But sometimes that stuff can trick you. Because there are guys like Terquavion Smith because if they are skinny they can really trick you with long arms. I thought Terquavion Smith had super long arms, but he had a +3 wingspan. It's just that skin and bones that make you look a little bit longer.

I think if there is somebody who fits it, I don't know if his wingspan is that much, but I would go with Johnny Furphy. He is a 6-9 wing. And he checks every box for what they need. He's really intelligent, can shoot the ball. I like his game a lot. He has been one of the big risers out of Kansas.

Philip: NCAA Tournament is coming up and conference tournaments are coming up and obviously ther eare a lot of G-Leauge guys and international players.

But as the American basketball world at least turns to the NCAA Tournament and gets these last impression of these guys, who is someone who can make a big name for themselves in the NCAA tournament, maybe in the Magic's range but could either play themselves out of the Magic's range or into that middle group.

Who are you watching as we get closer to the end of the college basketball season?

Richard: There's several guys.

I think DaRon Holmes is somebody who is not necessarily what the ideal Magic player looks like. He is frontcourt depth. It's tough to say if he will truly play center.

But he is someone I would keep an eye on at Dayton. The Atlantic 10 is not super strong this year, if they make some noise in the tournament, I could see him being in that mix.

Trey Alexander at Creighton. I know the Magic do not need guards. But we talked about that length. He is 6-foot-4 with I want to say a 6-foot-10 wingspan. He is ridiculously long. He's a guard, can play multiple defensive positions, can shoot and play on and off the ball.

Dalton Knecht, I hate to go back to him. He's the big name. If he kind stinks in March, which is unbelievably unlikely, but also Tennessee, no disrespect to Tennessee, they have a history.

Those are a few guys. For the most part, in terms of what the magic need, Alex Karaban plays his way up to the first round. Otherwise they can also just take him in the second round if not.

Philip: DaRon Holmes has been a bedrock for a good Dayton team the last two years. He is averaging 20.2 points per game and 8.3 rebounds per game -- up from 18.4 and 8.1 last year -- to lead Dayton into the top-25 and a sure spot in the NCAA Tournament.

He has even expanded his range this year, making 38.7 percent of his 2.5 3-point attempts per game. That is not his game, but that improvement is encouraging for the 6-foot-10 forward.

Trey Alexander at Creighton is averaging 17.5 points per game and 4.9 assists per game as he has taken on more offensive responsibility. His 3-point shooting has fallen off -- from 41.0 percent on 4.4 attempts per game as a sophomore to 32.1 percent on 5.3 attempts per game this year. But his 82.0 percent free throw percentage suggests that is more about attention and usage.

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This is part one of our conversation -- you can of course listen to the whole thing now in the video above. We will be back soon to chat about how the Magic's development of Anthony Black and Jett Howard may change the approach to the draft and how they have played in their rookie seasons.