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Magic seriously considering Cody Zeller at 2?

2013 June 25
by Brian Serra

Victor Oladipo, Cody Zeller

Coming into the season, Indiana C/PF Cody Zeller was seen as a sure-fire top three draft pick in this years draft. As the season played out, he quickly tumbled as he was considered to have too small of a reach (short arms) to be an impactful defender despite measuring at a legit seven feet tall and not having a strong enough offensive repetoire despite being seen as extremely athletic. In fact, Zeller measured some of the best physical tests of a big man in the last ten years of the combine - jumping nearly three feet high (35.5″) in the no-step vert.

In his latest Mock Draft released today, Chad Ford mentions that Zeller is a dark horse candidate to be selected at number two by Orlando.

Ford: “The Magic have explored a number of trade options if Noel isn’t there at No. 2. If they can’t work out a trade, it appears they continue to lean toward taking Oladipo over McLemore. While McLemore is a stronger offensive player, Oladipo’s defense and his crazy motor hold a strong appeal for the Magic. Cody Zeller is a dark horse here at No. 2.”

In addition, Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reports that the Magic are working Zeller out again today.

Does Orlando think that Zeller could play together with Vucevic or are they simply looking to find the best long-term candidate at the position? Or is it simply a smokescreen to make the pick look more dynamic to potential trade partners? Or is it possible that they could take Zeller after trading down? Or is it nothing?

While the Zeller Hate is strong right now, keep in mind that he did play in the hell hole depths of Big Ten basketball, which doesn’t exactly play to his strengths as a leaping gazelle.

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