Orlando Magic General Manager Rob Hennigan has finished clearing out the dead weight from the previous regime (Hi Otis Smith!), resulting in more than $45 million in dead salary that has limited Orlando Magic roster moves this season.
Including this year, the Orlando Magic will pay Hedo Turkoglu $6 million, Quentin Richardson $2,808,600, Glen Davis $6.6 million, Al Harrington $7,379,200, and Gilbert Arenas a staggering $22,346,536 not to play for them.
No one should call Magic owner Richard Devos cheap. The fact that he has been willing to swallow that dead money should put that criticism to bed. But it’s hard to believe that the Magic are making the same decisions they would have if they didn’t have a $45 million weight hanging around their necks. Orlando more than $5 million in salary cap space that has gone unused this year.
The Utah Jazz and Philadelphia 76ers have both recently taken advantage of salary cap space to absorb bloated salaries in exchange for draft picks. The Jazz received two unprotected first round picks and three second round picks simply for relieving the Golden State Warriors of their Andris Biedrens/Richard Jefferson burdens. The 76ers got two second round picks for the much cheaper sum of Eric Maynor’s $4.6 million dollar contract. The Magic easily could have replaced Philadelphia in the latter deal, but felt that $4.6 million was too expensive for second round draft picks.
The Magic also chose to sit out the Jimmer Fredette buyout. As the first team on the waiver wire, Orlando had Fredette if they wanted him. His salary was also a modest $2.4 million prorated for the last quarter of the season. But that money is exponentially more than the five figure cost of ten day contracts for Adonis Thomas and Dewayne Dedmon. Maybe GM Rob Hennigan wasn’t interested in Fredette as a player, but he seemed like a low risk flyer on an intriguing prospect.
It will be interesting to monitor how the dead-money salary obligations affect the Magic moving forward. Because of the stretch deal in the Arenas buyout, Orlando will be paying him for years, and they owe Glen Davis the full amount of his $6.6 million salary for next season. The Magic will have significant cap space this off season, but don’t seem primed to be a major player in free agency. Expect them to hover around the salary cap floor, only taking on mid-level salaries to round out the roster.
Do you think there have been Orlando Magic roster moves that have been left on the table? Which moves would you have liked to see? Let us know in the comments section below! Want more Magic? Sign up for the best newsletter ever!