The Orlando Magic Dancers will hold their first round of auditions on Saturday June 6th for the ’15-’16 season. For the first time in team history, the finals will be held in Nassau, Bahamas at the Convention, Arts, and Entertainment Center of Baha Mar Hotel & Casino on June 19th.
The first round of auditions will be closed to the public, and a maximum of 30 finalists will advance at the end of the day. Following the first round of auditions, each finalist will attend a finalist boot camp from June 7-15 and will be interviewed by representatives of the Orlando Magic before the final audition in the Bahamas.
Pre-audition intensive classes will also be held from June 1-3 at the RDV Sportsplex, and two dancers will receive a Pure Magic Pass that will automatically advance them to the audition finals at the conclusion of the pre-audition classes. To register for the auditions and intensive classes, click here.
Currently in their 27th season, team members perform at all Orlando Magic home games and appear at a combined total of over 250 events in and outside of Central Florida. If you couldn’t tell, the Orlando Magic Dancers are sponsored by Baha Mar. I’d assume there’s the extra incentive of a Brazil trip in October as well.
Let’s backtrack to this time in 1999, Orlando Magic fans. The Magic were knocked out of the first round of the postseason by the younger Philadelphia 76ers. Chuck Daly had just walked away as Head Coach. Bob Vander Weide and John Gabriel were on the hunt for a quick replacement with the NBA Draft and free agency a month away. The top candidates on a short list? Doc Rivers and Scott Skiles.
Both would receive face-to-face interviews at the RDV Sportsplex with Magic brass, including the departing Chuck Daly. One thing was certain, the Magic wanted a much younger guy in charge. Both Rivers and Skiles were in their mid-30s. Skiles was 35, Rivers was 37. The youngest Head Coach at the time was 37-year-old Jeff Van Gundy who just came off a Finals trip with the Knicks.
Skiles was only 5 years removed from being an actual Magic player. He got traded to Washington in 1994 to clear cap space for the fantastic acquisition of Horace Grant. The piece to the Anfernee Hardaway–Shaquille O’Neal puzzle that was supposed to lead to at least one championship. Skiles stuck around in the NBA for 2 more seasons before bolting for Greece in 1996. While Shaq was leaving O-Town for La La Land, Skiles was struggling with injuries for PAOK Thessaloniki. Eventually, Skiles would retire during that ’96-’97 season and pick up the clipboard for the first time. It was a crash course in being a Head Coach. That brief experience though opened the door for a return to the NBA. 2 seasons with the Phoenix Suns as an assistant. He was ready.
Yet Doc got the job. Rivers was on a – at the time – very rare path. Former NBA player, to television basketball analyst, to Head Coach. No assistant training, just jumped immediately to the head chair. Doc did play for coaches like Pat Riley, Larry Brown, and Mike Fratello to name a few. Maybe the Magic thought actual bench experience wouldn’t matter.
Little did we know that John Gabriel was about to ship out Nick Anderson, Anfernee Hardaway, and Horace Grant after Doc was brought in. Orlando was going to put together a cheap roster for one season before spending big in the summer of 2000. Let Doc have his bad win-loss season while learning on the job, pick up a great Draft pick, and try and grow a few decent player pieces in the process. It was going to be a brief tank job. Well it didn’t quite turn out that way. The money saving worked, but not nearly enough losing occurred.
The Orlando Magic will host the Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League at the team’s practice court at the Amway Center from July 4th through the 10th. The 25-game, seven-day event will feature two teams from the Orlando Magic (‘Blue’ and ‘White’), along with the Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Each team will play five games over the seven-day event, with a championship day being played on the final day of the league. A point system will establish the standings leading up to the final day, with 8 points awarded each game based on: 4 points for winning the game and 1 point for winning a quarter (in the event of a tied quarter, each team will receive 0.5 points). In the event of ties in seeding heading into championship day, three tiebreakers will be in place: 1) total point differential; 2) total points allowed; 3) coin flip.
Due to space limitations, the event is not open to the public. NBA TV will televise the Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League games. Fans will once again be able to watch every game live on NBA.com and on the NBA Game Time app.
A complete game schedule for the Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League is listed below. The Magic’s rosters will be released at a later date.
We already know the Orlando Magic will play a preseason contest in Brazil on October 17th. You can add a meeting with the Miami Heat in Louisville, Kentucky on October 7th to the exhibition calendar.
Heat to play Oct. 7 exhibition in Louisville against Magic. Heat drew sellout of 20,074 for preseason game there last season vs. Pelicans.
— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) May 21, 2015
The Heat played last year at the KFC Yum! Center against Kentucky NCAA champion Anthony Davis as well as Louisville NCAA champion Russ Smith and their New Orleans Pelicans. Maybe the event organizers believe the Magic or Heat will select a Wildcat product with their #5 and #10 NBA Draft selections. Victor Oladipo is an Indiana Hoosier, and Bloomington is only a 100-mile drive to Louisville.
The contest will be treated as a Miami Heat home game, so the Magic will be designated as the ‘visitors’.
Louisville has for a while now had the facilities and the fans to support an NBA franchise on a full-time basis. It’s the matter of being awarded a team that has proven challenging as there are no signs of expansion from the current 30-team model.
The Orlando Magic didn’t have any of its players get named to the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd All-NBA teams on Thursday, but center Nikola Vucevic did receive 6 votes.
Magic center Nikola Vucevic got six votes for the All-NBA teams.
— Zach Oliver (@ZachOliverNBA) May 21, 2015
Nik Vucevic finished in a tie for 25th in the All-NBA voting. The top 15 players made the 1st or 2nd or 3rd teams.
— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) May 21, 2015
It’s nice to see the Magic’s best player during the ’14-’15 campaign getting a little bit of national recognition despite the team posting a disappointing 25-win season.
This is an MBO series of 2014-2015 Orlando Magic seasonal player recaps and evaluations. As the NBA Draft and free agency approach, we’ll dive into statistics, highlights, and more as we dissect the 15-man roster and figure out who should stay and who should go as we enter a very important offseason in the franchise’s history.
Ben Gordon last summer looked like he was an NBA outcast. He was a walking expiring salary in Charlotte, making over $13 million in the ’13-’14 campaign where he played only 19 games and made some enemies with that franchise. It got so bad that he was waived on March 2, 2014. That prevented him from joining any playoff team looking to add roster depth.
Then the lifeline came in the form of Rob Hennigan, Scott Perry, and rest of the Magic front office. The basketball world scoffed when it was found out that Orlando gave Ben a 2-year, $9 million contract. From the moment he and Willie Green showed up to town, Ben took up the mentoring role management wanted him to hold.
The Orlando Magic finished with the 5th-worst record in the NBA this season. In a bit of a surprise though, the Magic didn’t improve or fall in the Draft Lottery and will be selecting with the #5 selection in the June 25th NBA Draft. The Magic organization has already announced their Draft Party.
As reported here, coming into the lottery, the team with the 5th-worst record had only ended up with the #5 choice once in the past decade. If the Magic keep the 5th selection, the Magic will most likely be paying that athlete $3.74 million in the 2015-2016 campaign as that is 120% of the rookie salary scale for that position.
For the first time since the Magic won the #1 pick in 2004, the worst team in the NBA actually ended up with the #1 selection. The Minnesota Timberwolves will most likely make NBA history by having the last three #1 consecutive choices on their roster (Anthony Bennett, Andrew Wiggins). The New York Knicks were the biggest losers, falling from second down to the #4 pick. While the Lakers leaped from fourth up to #2.
There’s little doubt that the top two choices will be Karl-Anthony Towns and Jahlil Okafor. It’s all about what order that will occur in now.
We’ll get deeper into the potential choices at #5, but the Magic are looking at a potential pool of guys including: Justise Winslow, Willie Cauley-Stein, Mario Hezonja, and Kristaps Porzingis.
There are already rumors that the Knicks will trade the #4 pick, so anyone looking to leap up in front of the Magic to grab a guy like D’Angelo Russell, Emmanuel Mudiay, or even Justise Winslow will have to pay a price.
It’s here, Orlando Magic fans. Hopefully this is the last time this franchise is in the Draft Lottery for several years. Winning the #1 pick very well could assure that. If you need a reminder, below is my chart of the last decade of lotteries:
The Magic have the 5th-best odds at winning the lottery. 8.8% chance at the #1 pick. 9.7% at the 2nd selection. 10.7% chance at the 3rd pick. To stay put at #5, it’s a 26.1% chance. 36.0% at dropping to the 6th choice (most likely scenario). To slide down to 7th, it’d be an 8.4% chance. If the basketball gods really want to create chaos, it’s 0.4% odds of falling all the way to #8.
Checking out the results for what happens at the #5 pre-lottery spot, there’s a lot of randomness.
Only once in the past decade has the #5 spot ended up with the 5th pick. 4 times the pick has jumped into the top 3 (twice to #1, once to #2, and once to #3). However, four times the pick has dropped to #6. It’s also fallen to #7 once.
The last time the worst team in the NBA won the #1 pick was the Magic back in 2004. The Dwight Howard era would begin at that point. If you’re the Minnesota Timberwolves, you’re hoping that the odds are in your favor. Three times in the last 21 years has the worst team actually won the #1 pick.
Orlando Magic guard Elfrid Payton has been named to the 2014-2015 NBA All-Rookie First Team. He received 121 First Team votes out of a possible 130.
Payton becomes the ninth player in franchise history to be named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team. Victor Oladipo received the honor last year. Payton was joined on this First Team by Minnesota’s Andrew Wiggins, Chicago’s Nikola Mirotic, Philadelphia’s Nerlens Noel and Jordan Clarkson of the Los Angeles Lakers.
You can see how the 130 people who had a ballot voted here. Along with the 121 First Team votes, Elfrid also got 8 Second Team votes. That means ONE person out of 130 didn’t vote for Elfrid on either team. Mike Rice of Comcast SportsNet Northwest didn’t include Elfrid on his ballot. That’s outrageous considering he voted in guys like Dante Exum, Jerami Grant, and Tyler Ennis over the Magic point guard. Rice has apologized for the mistake.
I can't believe I DiD that must have been after back to back games https://t.co/s8CapQd0Xp
— Mike Rice (@mikerice6) May 18, 2015
Payton played in all 82 games (63 starts) during his rookie campaign, averaging 8.9 ppg., a team-high 6.5 apg., 4.3 rpg. and a team-high 1.73 spg. at 30.3 minutes per contest. He also had a respectable assists-to-turnover ratio of 2.63 (533/203). Payton was the only Magic player to appear in every regular season game. He ranked 13th in the NBA in steals, 14th in assists and 16th in assists-to-turnover ratio. Payton also ranked among all NBA rookies in scoring (eighth), rebounding (tied for eighth), assists (first), field goal percentage (seventh), steals (second) and minutes played (fourth).
Payton led (or tied) the Magic in scoring four times, in rebounding six times, and in assists a team-best 64 times. On March 18th at Dallas, he became the third rookie in Magic history to record a triple-double (Anfernee Hardaway, Victor Oladipo). Then on March 20th vs. Portland, Payton tallied his second straight triple-double, becoming the first player in Magic history to ever post consecutive triple-doubles. He also became just the seventh rookie in NBA history and the first since April 1997 (Antoine Walker) to accomplish the feat.
This is an MBO series of 2014-2015 Orlando Magic seasonal player recaps and evaluations. Throughout this month of May – as the NBA Draft and free agency approach – we’ll dive into statistics, highlights, and more as we dissect the 15-man roster and figure out who should stay and who should go as we enter a very important offseason in the franchise’s history.
You know that experience after you’ve bought a new computer/laptop? Everything is running efficiently, you’re pleased, but you’ll be happier once you start adding more programs and extra software to it. Well eventually you get to a point where you may have overdone it. Your computer begins to run slower. Programs start giving you error messages. You realize you ruined a good piece of machinery.
Andrew Nicholson is that computer, and he’s on a downhill performance trend. That’s not ideal when you’ve just completed your third season in the NBA and are 25 years old. Things won’t get better until someone cleans out the cookies, removes some unnecessary programs, and reboots Andrew. Whether a different NBA destination can do that, or if it’ll be the new Magic coaching staff, we’ll find out in a year or less.
2012-2013: 7.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 52.7 FG%, 16.7 minutes per contest
2013-2014: 5.7 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 42.9 FG%, 31.5 3PT%, 15.4 minutes per contest
2014-2015: 4.9 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 43.7 FG%, 31.7 3PT%, 12.3 minutes per contest
Adding the 3-point shot in his second season ended up ruining Andrew. He’s got the talent. Nicholson was a first round Draft pick for a reason, and you see how great of a rookie campaign he had. Andrew even managed to improve his defense (both 1-on-1 and help) during this latest inconsistent season, but his offense is failing him now and it’s difficult to imagine the incoming coaching staff utilizing the Canadian more than ten minutes per night.