Having played for five NBA franchises in the past three seasons, finding a long-term home was the most important part during free agency for point guard D.J. Augustin.
Augustin, 28, who just welcomed his third child, was looking for long-term insurance. When the Orlando Magic gave offered him a reported four-year, $29 million dollar contract, Augustin was quick to jump on the offer.
“It was very important,” Augustin said on the importance of signing a long-term contract. “I have a family, I have three kids now so just being somewhere where is stable, basically a long-term place was very important to me this summer. I’m excited, man.”
One of the areas where the front office wanted to improve this offseason was outside shooting, and Augustin has been one of the best outside shooting back-up point guards in the NBA.
After being in and out the rotation in Oklahoma City, Augustin was then traded to the Denver Nuggets in the deal that sent Randy Foye to OKC. Following the trade, Augustin showed what he was capable of, shooting 41% from behind-the-arc.
“That just didn’t work out,” Augustin said on his situation with Oklahoma City. “Obviously they had Russell [Westbrook] playing the majority of the minutes over there. They drafted a young kid, that situation just didn’t work out. It was just a matter of time with that situation .. But I’ve been doing what I did the last few games in Denver for the last four years. Guys getting injured, stepping up, playing starter minutes, playing whatever type of minutes the coach needs me to do. I’m confident in my game, I know what I can do, and I think most of the NBA knows also.”
Besides his shooting ability, the Magic are looking to solidify their back-up point guard spot, which was a problem for them last season.
The 28-year old point guard knows that he was brought on to be the back-up point guard, but he’s ready to help Elfrid Payton take the next step in his development.
“Elfrid is actually from New Orleans, and so am I, so we’ve already been talking and stuff,” said Augustin on his relationship with Payton. “Just being there, you know, whatever he needs me to do to help him, know things off the court, what not to do, what to do, how to handle certain things, especially on the court. I usually lead by example so in practice and just spending time together off the court. I’m just trying to be the best example I can be for him, and at the same time we’re going to compete in practice and just try and make each other better, make the team better and that’s what point guards do.”
Despite being brought in to help on the offensive end, Augustin knows just how good this team can be on the defensive end of the court.
“I think we have a chance to be a really good defensive team and that’s what wins games, that’s what wins championships,” said Augustin. “ That’s why I know that we have a good chance of being a playoff team this year because of that. Offense usually comes from defense so that’s going to be a big key for us this year, playing great defense.”