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Could the Magic Target Michael Carter-Williams In A Trade?

2013 June 11
by Andrew Melnick

mcw-oladipoMBO has profiled six players in anticipation of this month’s draft, figuring the Magic would select one of those six (Oklahoma State guard Marcus SmartKansas guard Ben McLemore,  Michigan guard Trey BurkeKentucky Center Nerlens NoelIndiana wing Victor Oladipo and Georgetown wing Otto Porter, Jrwith the second overall pick.

However, Marcus Smart chose not to enter the draft and the Magic are rumored to be willing to trade down.  That leads many to believe the Magic are very interested in Syracuse point guard Michael Carter-Williams, who recently told reporters he would work out for the Magic.

Carter-Williams spent two seasons playing for Jim Boeheim and the Orange. While at Syracuse, Carter-Williams helped lead the Orange to a 30-10 record, an appearance in the Big East Championship game (a 78-61 loss to eventual National Champion Louisville) and a trip to the Final Four (a 61-56 loss to Michigan).

Carter-Williams had an up-an-down season. The highlight was an upset victory over the Indiana Hoosiers in the Sweet 16. Carter-Williams scored 24 points, leading the Orange to a 61-50 win. The low point may have been Carter-Williams’ final game. He scored just two points on one-of-six shooting in 35 minutes in a 61-56 loss to Michigan in the Final Four.

At last month’s combined, Carter-Williams measured in with a height of 6’5.75, a weight of 184 lbs. and a wingspan of 6’7.25, which is why Carter-Williams is an intriguing pick. Carter-Williams is lucky he has great measurables, because his numbers, which we will take a look at after the jump, are not good.


40/40  35.2 20.9  11.9 43.8 49.1 29.4  69.4
22.2 4.7 7.8 40.1 22.2 104.6 87.4 6.3


Carter-Williams clearly struggled shooting the ball last season. Every shooting statistic shown above needs drastic improvement and gives signs that Carter-Williams will not be much of a scorer at the next level.

Carter-Williams’s biggest strength (outside of his elite size) is the way he gets shots for his teammates.

“What Carter-Williams lacks in his ability to put points put on the board, he makes up for with his passing skills and creativity with the ball in his hands,”writes Jonathan Givony of Draft Express.

He averaged 7.3 assists per game and has an incredible assist percentage of 40.1%.

“He’s a very unselfish player, highly creative and blessed with terrific court vision, able to make both simple and flashy passes, and seeing the floor extremely well thanks to his terrific size and the unique angles he has at his disposal because of it,” writes Givony. “With his ability to see over the top of the defense, he makes beautiful skip passes to both sides of the floor and is extremely effective at finding open shooters spotting up on the wing, or big men flashing into the paint for lobs. Generally speaking, he does an excellent job of putting his teammates in position to score, which is exactly what a classic pass-first point guard is supposed to do.”

With Carter-Williams’ size and athleticism, he could develop into excellent defender. He averaged 2.8 steals per game last season. It’s hard to tell what kind of man-on-man defender Carter-Williams will be because of the famous 2-3 Zone Boeheim runs at Syracuse. However, Carter-Williams has the tools to become an excellent NBA defense and the size to guard multiple positions.

Besides shooting, Carter-Williams has trouble taking care of the ball. He averaged 3.4 turnovers per game this year and had a turnover rate of 22.2%.

Although it’s tough to be overly impressed with Carter-Williams because of his poor shooting, there is plenty of talent to work with. He is a fantastic athlete with great size giving fans a lot to like. As for how he’d fit in the Magic, it would obviously be a difficult transition, but this is a team who needs a point guard in the draft and looks like they will attempt to fill both guard spots this offseason. Maybe that means drafting Ben McLemore or Victor Oladipo second and trading back into the draft (with a team like Minnesota at nine or Dallas at 13) and drafting Carter-Williams.

Mock Drafts:

Draft Express:
Carter-Williams Pick: 13th overall to Dallas
Magic Pick: Kansas guard Ben McLemore

NBA Draft.Net
Carter-Williams Pick: 13th overall to Dallas
Magic Pick: Kentucky center Nerlens Noel

Hoops World:
Carter-Williams Pick: 13th overall to Dallas
Magic Pick: Kansas guard Ben McLemore

ESPN (Chad Ford):
Carter-Williams Pick: Eighth overall to Detroit
Magic Pick: Inidana wing Victor Oladipo

CBS (Matt Moore):
Carter-Williams Pick: 13th overall to Dallas
Magic Pick: Kansas guard Ben McLemore


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