The Orlando Magic have struggled to start the regular season although they have played better recently. But the belief within the team is that they still lack legit scorers and could target veteran forward Rudy Gay in a trade with the Sacramento Kings.
According to Steve Kyler of the Basketball Insiders, the Magic management has tried to inquire about the veteran forward’s availability.
Just this offseason, Gay announced his plan to opt out of his contract with Sacramento and shared his unhappiness in playing for a rebuilding and struggling team like the Kings.
“I know Orlando kicked the tires on it. I have been told Rockets like where they are, so that’s not very likely. Rudy is basically a rental, so that will weigh heavily on where he lands. He could end up staying in Sacramento if the return is not right and the Kings get the cap space,” Kyler wrote in a recent Q-and-A article.
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The NBA analyst also noted that Gay has recently changed agents and this could be a factor in any deal involving the veteran scorer.
Gay to Orlando Magic works but at what cost?
While Gay has not publicly demanded a trade since speaking out about the Kings’ situation before the season started, the veteran is expected to welcome any change that involves him being traded to another NBA team.
Likely, he wants to play for a contender but he might have not much leverage since the Kings will just look to get maximum value from him as he hits free agency next summer.
While the Magic are currently not title or playoff contenders, adding Gay will make them a formidable team in the easier Eastern Conference.
Orlando has struggled again to start this season holding a 16-20 record so far this year. They are 12th in the East standings but are just one and a half games behind the eighth-place team in the conference.
The Kings won’t get much for a “rental” like Gay since the veteran will look to land a new contract during the summer. However, if the Magic can include a future draft pick in any trade then Sacramento might be willing to swing a deal.
According to ESPN’s trade checker, a Rudy Gay (about $13 million) for Jeff Green ($15 million) works under the NBA trade rules. A straight-up trade won’t be appealing for the Kings but if the Magic include a first rounder then they will think about the trade since that draft pick can help their rebuilding efforts.
For the Magic, this is an easy decision since they want to contend now. Serge Ibaka might leave next summer but they still have the salary cap space to retain him even if they get Gay’s contract this season.
On the court, Orlando will add a veteran scorer that can fit nicely along with Ibaka, Bismack Biyombo and Aaron Gordon.
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Will the Kings finally ship out Rudy Gay after all the NBA rumors this season? Or are they happy to just let his contract expire after the season?
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