Deal of the Day, Salary cap rules may be bent but hopefully not broken.
Today’s Deal: What Would an Orlando Trade Down Look Like?
Last time we dealt with the Magic the target was Nikola Vucevic. Some felt it was more likely they’d keep him and use their other center to get a deal done. Let’s walk it through a rare Mo for Mo swap.
The Wizards trade the #9 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, guard Jerome Robinson and center Moritz Wagner to the Orlando Magic in exchange for the #15 overall pick, center Mohamed Bamba and a 2021 2nd round pick.
Why do the Magic do the deal?
They’ve been bitten by the draft bug. Once a franchise gets the bug for a player crazy things can happen. Comedian Mitch Hedberg talked about being a joke writer without a pen, you either have to do something about it or convince yourself the joke wasn’t that funny to begin with. In this scenario the Magic do something about it.
Orlando is looking at a 2021 season without Jonathan Isaac. It’s tempting to keep their streak of long versatile forwards going with a Patrick Williams pick at 9. With 2019 stash forward pick Chuma Okeke expected back it’s best we go in a different direction. Here the Magic have the hots for a PG, either Killian Hayes or Tyrese Haliburton. I gave myself a mini migraine briefly considering a Fultz-Haliburton back court.
The asset moving here is Mohamed Bamba, the 6th overall pick in the 2018 draft. A 7 footer with 7’10 wingspan, Bamba is available because he hasn’t yet panned out for the Magic. Orlando took him in 2018 with a plan to have Mo take over the starting center position after Nikola Vucevic hit his free agent year in 2019. Instead Vucevic and the Magic agreed to a 4 year $100 million extension. Not exactly a vote of confidence for Bamba.
If you thought that was bad, wait till I tell you how Orlando gave Khem Birch a 2 year $6 million deal last year too. Woof, that’s a lot of money spent at the center position AFTER seeing Bamba for a full season.
Why do the Wizards do the deal?
They are open to moving the pick if their top guy isn’t there at No. 9. This is one of the few assets we’ve discussed where it might be as much about the guy we’re getting as it is NOT getting our favorite player at #9. We’re not THAT removed the 2018 draft and Orlando wasn’t the only team with high hopes for Bamba.
Despite all that competition for playing time at center in snore-lando, Bamba played decently, just not very much. In his rookie season he averaged 16 minutes per game. In his second year he averaged 14 minutes per game. If you’re Bambas’ reps you’re looking for a new home too.
Mo’s Per-36 output suggests there is an impact player in there: 13.6 pts, 12.4 rebs, 3.5 blks and 1.7 asts while increasing his free throw percentage and his 3pt percentage substantially. Bamba made 37 three’s in 62 appearances last year.
He’s a finesse big who likes to hang around the perimeter more than get inside and impose himself on a defense. I see similarities to a young Myles Turner with Bamba the better in blocking and rebounding in his limited sample. Would love to see what Bamba could do as a lob threat on pick and rolls with Bradley Beal or John Wall.
If that block number wasn’t enough in terms of rim protection (it should be) there’s more! Bamba’s Defensive FG percentage was 51.4%. He’s there with high level company, Rudy Gobert, JaVale McGee, Jakob Poeltl then Bamba.
Sign me up.
Mo still has a way to go on his strength. I know it won’t always be pretty. He’s not going to blow anyone away with his agility. The ground he covers is in the sky. Wait. The ground can’t be in the sky. No, but an escalator can never break, it just becomes stairs.
Draft options at #15 include the guys we know well: Saddiq Bey, Aaron Nesmith and Jalen Smith. The boom hunting guys: RJ Hampton or Aleksej Pokusevski. The Oh Really? guys: Cole Anthony, Josh Green, or Jahmi’us Ramsey.
Wizards would have #15, #37, MLE and the BAE:
- John Wall - Ish Smith - Shabazz Napier (UFA)
- Bradley Beal - Troy Brown Jr. - Garrison Mathews (RFA)
- ______________ - Isaac Bonga - Admiral Schofield
- Rui Hachimura - Davis Bertans (UFA)
- Thomas Bryant - Mo Bamba - Anzejs Pasecniks (camp guarantee)
Trade down to add Mo Bamba?
This poll is closed
Yes, in fact Orlando could make a case Bamba is worth #9 without the pick swap.
Nah, Orlando thinks Bamba is worth the #9 pick without a swap. No dice.
Want to request a trade target or send a challenge? Email me at Jheiser3 at gmail.com and include your Bullets Forever screen name.