Nikola Vucevic, Evan Fournier see continuity as an advantage for Magic
The Orlando Magic surprised a lot of people last season when they suddenly barged into the playoffs as the seventh seed. For the first half of their 2018-19 campaign, they were around the 10th-12th spot in the Eastern Conference, but they picked up steam after the All-Star break and started winning games.
The Magic faced eventual NBA champions Toronto Raptors in the first round of the playoffs, and although they failed to win that series, that gave the players hope they can do better this 2019-20 campaign.
Evan Fournier, who said last season that the Magic would be broken up if they miss the playoffs, is happy that they no longer have to start from scratch, per John Denton of the Magic.com.
“I’m so happy we don’t have to start over. People ask us all the time, `What changed after the All-Star break?’ Nothing changed, but it just takes time to adjust to a different system. Not having to start over this season is huge and having the same core is going to help us tremendously. You can’t really put a value on that,” the French guard said.
All-Star forward Nikola Vucevic shares the same sentiments as Fournier, as he believes that continuity will help the Magic in the long run.
“In the NBA when you look at teams that have had success for many years, they have the same core of players and the same coach. That familiarity helps. You can make small tweaks but when the basics stay the same that’s important. That’s going to help us a lot,” Vucevic explained.
The Magic’s front office has decided to roll with almost the same roster from last season. They also chose to retain Steve Clifford as coach.
Vucevic and Fournier both made valid points about the advantage of continuity, but the question now is, how good will the Magic be, especially against the new-look contenders in the league?