Orlando Magic battle for Playoff position, searching for the future

The Orlando Magic are in the middle of a race for homecourt advantage for the 2024 Playoffs. At the same time, the Magic are approaching a critical part of their rebuild where decisions will have to be made. This final stretch of games will be the biggest assessment of various players for this upcoming summer.
Brooklyn Nets v Orlando Magic
Brooklyn Nets v Orlando Magic / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages
3 of 4

Orlando Magic battling for playoffs, eyeing their future needs

Point Guard

The other big question the Orlando Magic need to answer sits at the point guard position.

Jalen Suggs has seemingly secured the shooting guard position. But at the point guard spot, the Magic have multiple options to fill in. It could also be where the Magic focus their offseason attention.

Anthony Black has proven he deserves a spot in the rotation. But he has not been able to find consistent minutes. And the Magic have not really used him as a point guard, despite that being his natural position.

The other options come with a lot of questions and seem to have hit their top roles.

Cole Anthony has carved himself a consistent role as the sixth man. Both Markelle Fultz and Gary Harris have been in and out of the lineup all season long. Everything internally seems to suggest Black is the heir apparent at point guard.

Playing in spots when needed both starting and off the bench, Black has played within his role on offense. Two indicators are his efficiency on the offensive end on 46.9 percent shooting and 37.3 percent from three. He also averages less than a turnover per game. That has been important in his minutes.

With that being said, Black earned his minutes with his defense. Black has been disruptive and has been a strong on-ball defender and the glimpse of having Suggs and Black in the same backcourt is a scary thought.

Anthony Black has earned the trust of coach Jamahl Mosley. But at the moment, he currently has too many players ahead of him.

Fultz's availability is the bigger question overall for the Magic. He is going to become a free agent in the summer and his shooting shortcomings and his injury issues -- he has played only 25 games -- are raising questions as the Magic get more consistent.

Fultz has worked extremely hard to get back to where he was last season but his body has failed him and time is not on his side.

The shooting slip and confidence has been the biggest story and what has put his spot on the team in jeopardy.

Fultz went from shooting 31.0 percent from three last season, which was a career-high and a 7.5-percentage point increase from the previous year down to 1 for 9 shooting this year. Not only has Fultz struggled to shoot the ball from three, but he is not even looking to attempt them.

In the modern NBA, it is important to spread the floor and keep the defense honest. That was the difference last season. Fultz was still a below-average shooter, but he was willing to take them. That opened up the rest of his game. He was able to play at his at his own pace.

At the moment, Fultz is still able to get to the rim at will, play strong defense, control pace and be the team's best playmaker. The ability to control pace and playmake is something this team needs.

Fultz is the best on the team at doing things that do not show up on the stat sheet. But the regression of his shooting and injuries has caused a change in his role as the season continues.