Key questions before the Magic’s preseason opener
The Orlando Magic will tip-off their preseason tonight (7 p.m. ET) against the New Orleans Pelicans at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.
With the preseason beginning, here are some key questions Magic fans may have:
What will the starting lineup look like?
You can expect to see head coach Jacque Vaughn mix up the lineup throughout the preseason. He will experiment to see what works best. After talking to GM Rob Hennigan and Vaughn this past week, it is clear that they view Victor Oladipo as a guard and will test him at point guard and shooting guard.
My lineup prediction for tonight’s game: PG Jameer Nelson, SG Arron Afflalo, SF Maurice Harkless, PF Tobias Harris and C Nik Vucevic. Expect to see Oladipo to come off the bench tonight as he transitions from college to the NBA and from shooting guard to point guard.
How much playing time will players get?
Being a preseason game, I would not expect any of the players to play more than 24 minutes. This is a great time for players that don’t have a guaranteed contact to stand out in hopes of getting at least a one year contract for the 2013-14 season.
When will Glen Davis return?
Davis broke his left foot in late January and underwent surgery to insert a screw to stabilize and repair his fifth metatarsal on Feb. 1, 2013. He underwent surgery again to replace the same screw in early July. The Magic are being very cautious with Davis’ return. They want to make sure he’s 100 percent before he returns as a precaution. They don’t want him re-injuring his foot. Even though Davis has not been able to practice with the team the Magic hope he can start practicing towards the end of October.
What did the players do in the off-season to improve?
Maurice Harkless and Tobias Harris packed on muscle over the summer. In theory this means, they’re stronger and faster but how that translates on the court is still yet to be determined. The young guys worked out together for most of the summer, which should strengthen the team and the chemistry on the court.
What are some of the offseason roster moves the Magic made?
Beno Udrih who arrived in Orlando after the J.J. Redick trade became a free agent and signed with New York Knicks in July. DeQuan Jones was not extended an offer after Summer League. He is currently on the Sacramento Kings’ roster.
As far as additions go, Victor Oladipo and Romero Osby were drafted by the Magic in June. Ronnie Price and Jason Maxiell were added to the Magic’s roster in July. Hennigan hopes that the two veterans help balance out the young roster.
Check back later for live updates of the Magic vs. Pelicans game.