After signing Ben Gordon and Channing Frye, the Orlando Magic made what many would assume to be their final move of the offseason with the signing of veteran point guard Luke Ridnour. Ridnour, an 11-year veteran, is excited for the opportunity to play with the young core that the Magic have. He feels as though the future in Orlando is “very, very bright” and thinks that it’s going to be a “exciting, good year” as the team continues to grow with the pieces they had in place, and the pieces they’ve added this summer.
From the start of free agency, the Magic had interest in Ridnour. Like Gordon and Frye, the team zeroed in on them, and did what they had to to secure their services for the near future.
Adam Papageorgiou of MagicBasketballOnline asked the former Oregon Duck at what point the Magic were the more viable option to sign with. The veteran point guard had this to say:
“You know I think from day one they called and were really interested, so as it went along and things kind of happened, started to get more and more excited about Orlando, my family was super excited about it. So, when it was all said and done, this was a place we ended up being. It’s going to be a good spot. Gonna be fun. You know, there’s a lot of young guys here and the team is going to get better and better and for me to be a part of that at the latter part of my career; it’s going to be a fun, fun season.”
Ridnour, who’s spent time with the Seattle SuperSonics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Milwaukee Bucks, and Charlotte Bobcats, was also asked if he had discussions about what his role was going to be with the team. “You know, I’ve talked to them a little bit about it, and it’s just coming in here and helping these guys,” said Ridnour. He went on to say, “The goal here is to win games. That’s what they want to do, that’s what, as a team, we want to do. Whatever role that is I’m here to help and just have a good time. Like I said, I’m excited to be here and be a part of what’s happening here.”
With only one true point guard on the roster in rookie Elfrid Payton, Ridnour could see a good amount of time on court. However, a lot will depend on what they plan to do with soon-to-be second year guard Victor Oladipo. Do they move the Indiana product back to his more natural off guard spot? Do they start him at point guard to begin and season and let Payton come off the bench? Both of these questions and more will have a profound impact on the amount of time Ridnour actually sees on the court.
However, when he is on the floor, Ridnour will definitely have an impact. Larry Ridley of Orlando’s NBC affiliate WESH-2 News, asked Ridnour to explain his game to those who may not be familiar with it. He had this to say, “I’m an up-and-down point guard, get up-and-down. I’m a pass first guy, get guys involved, and with so much athleticism, it’ll be fun to throw some lobs and get the crowd going.”
Finally, the 6-foot-2 point guard and his family are both excited for the opportunity to live in Orlando. After predominantly playing in cold weather cities for the past six-to-seven years, Ridnour will get a chance to be in 80 degree weather in January, something he’s excited about that chance.
While unclear how much he’ll actually get to play, Ridnour is clearly excited about the opportunity he’s going to be getting with the young Magic squad. He’ll be a nice addition to the locker room, and he’ll undoubtedly help both Elfrid Payton and Victor Oladipo understand the nuances of running an offense at the NBA level.