Orlando Magic Blog

Group Blog talking about the NBA 2009 Eastern Conference Champions. Due to the amazing success of the 2009 playoff run comments are now frequently deleted to kill offensive comments, incoherence, or asininity. Comments can no longer be anonymous and require either a Blogger or OpenID account.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

It's official... Magic trade for Houston point guard Rafer Alston

Magic trade Brian Cook for Rockets' Rafer Alston

Brian Schmitz
Sentinel Staff Writer
6:26 PM EST, February 19, 2009

Looking for a point guard who can help them shake their slump and turn them into a legitimate playoff threat, the Orlando Magic have acquired Houston Rockets point guard Rafer Alston.

It's a three-way deal with the Memphis Grizzlies, as the other team sends Magic power forward Brian Cook and Grizzlies point guard Kyle Lowry to Houston, with the Grizzlies landing the Magic's 2009-2010 first-round pick.

To make the salaries work, the Magic sent center Adonal Foyle and Mike Wilks to Memphis.

The Magic's problems at the spot since the loss of Jameer Nelson to a shoulder injury two weeks ago have been apparent.

Alston is an upgrade over Anthony Johnson and Tyronn Lue, whom the Magic acquired from the Milwaukee Bucks recently.

Alston, 6-2, 175, is 32 and in his 11th season.

He has averaged 10.2 points and 4.5 assists for his career. This season with the Rockets, he is averaging 11.5 points, 5.4 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game.

In addition to Brian Schmitz's article, let me also point out that Alston has 24 assists in his last two games, with a brilliant 24/3 assist/turnover ratio. In his last five games, he is shooting a solid 12 of 26 from three point range. I would say that's better than anybody the Magic have as point guard right now, wouldn't you?

With this trade, GM Otis Smith has shown he hasn't given up on the season, and he's provided the Magic with a solid backup at PG when Jameer Nelson returns next season.

For a further statistical and financial analysis of the trade, check out this very informative post from Third Quarter Collapse


  • At 9:20 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    After seeing how horrendous the Magic looked offensively in losses to Denver and New Orleans, Otis Smith realized he had to do something else besides the Lue-for-Bogans trade, and he did.

    With Jameer in there, the chemistry with the offense was so good, everyone knew their roles, and performed like a finely-tuned machine every night.

    Ever since Jameer's injury, the chemistry on offense completely disappeared. Now, with a legitimate point guard in Rafer Alston, maybe some of that chemistry can come back. Obviously, it won't be the same as when Jameer was in there, but it should be much better than it was with Johnson and Lue at the point.

    Hopefully, this will help Turk, Lewis, and Pietrus, as all three have been sub-par scoring-wise the last several games.

    Nice job, Otis.

  • At 10:55 PM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    From John Hollinger, ESPN:

    Orlando: A nice save for the Magic, who probably hit the phones in horror as soon as they saw Chris Paul tear through their stopgap point guards on Wednesday night. Alston makes a lot for what he produces, but he goes way back with Stan Van Gundy, so he should be able to run the offense from Day 1, and his ability to defend should allow Orlando to hold down the fort at point guard with Jameer Nelson out for the season.

    This deal solidifies Orlando's standing as the East's No. 3 team and puts the Magic on a likely course for two playoff rounds. Alston also will upgrade the backup point guard spot next year when Nelson comes back.

    Foyle and Wilks had to go to make the cap math work. Only their friends and families will notice. Grade: B

  • At 4:11 AM, Blogger OVERWADED said…

    Great move Otis.

    Last season a majority of Magic fans would have said Alston was equal or better than Nelson. Obviously Jameer stepped his game up this season, but I have a feeling Skip 2 My Lou is going to be a pleasant surprise.

    Hope has returned to Orlando...

  • At 9:40 AM, Blogger Big Figure said…

    Yea intro i agree,rafer and jameer have gone head to head plenty of times and rafer is just as good as jameer leadership wise,we'll never replace jameer's low-to-the-ground magical dribbling skills and quickness,but rafer does alot of really good things. He shoots the ball very well,he's a good defender with size and like i said before he will lead us. He has a sportcenter top 10 highlight right now where he drops a dime behind his back to scolla,the pass was sick and we could use alot of that right now. The thing i like about rafer the most is probably his basketball IQ,you rarely see him make a bad play shooting or passing the ball. Very good move for otis to show fans that he's about winning and winning now!

  • At 10:56 AM, Blogger WeRDevos said…

    Good move. Huge upgrade at PG over what the Magic had. Two roster spots now open with several big men looking for buyouts like Joe Smith that could help in the playoffs this year.

    What this means for next summer will be interesting to follow. David Stern told the GM's at the All Star break that next years Luxury Tax will be at $69 million down from $72 million this year.

    Magic have 10 players signed for next year at $70 million. They have no interest in paying the Luxury Tax. 9 at $63 million if Hedo opts out. If Hedo opts out, Magic will now need to dump a contract on someone to resign him or let him go.

    Magic will still need to resign Gortat or someone like him, plus at least two more cheap players.

    The cost of Rafer now, may be a starting lineup next year of Dwight, Rashard, Pietrus, Lee & Nelson.

  • At 4:14 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    From Brian Schmitz's basketblog earlier today:

    Magic Coach Stan Van Gundy said after Friday's shootaround in Charlotte that if all the participants in the club's trade for Rafer Alston are medically cleared in time, he will play the new point guard tonight against the Bobcats.

    "We'll have to see. If everything goes along the time-line and we think we can give him enough on the board in the office, then I'll play him a little," Van Gundy said.

    Alston, expected to arrive in Charlotte around 12:30 p.m. and then take a physical, was acquired Thursday from the Houston Rockets before the trade deadline in a three-team deal.


    Magic are a 2 1/2 point favorite over the Bobcats.

    I don't expect Alston to play tonight.

    It's going to be difficult for Dwight to duplicate his career game from Tuesday night against the Bobcats. I figure that the Bobcats will use the strategy that the Hornets did the next night, that is, fouling Dwight as often as possible.

    Turk, Pietrus, and Lewis will have to pick up their scoring to help ease the load on D12. If they don't tonight, this could be a Bobcats' win, but hopefully the Magic will get at least a psychological boost knowing a new point guard is coming.

  • At 8:26 AM, Blogger Matt said…

    This is a very good move since Rafer is more than capable to help the Magic passed the second round. For the long term though if Magic is not serious about contention, and is mindful of salary cap this move may cause some complications. Rafer Alston makes 5.25 mil next year which means the Magic is in trouble if they are serious about signing Hedo should he opt out of his contract, and still remain under salsry cap. Lue's trade would have no effect on next year's situation but again shows the foolishness of such a hasty move in the trade that brought Lue to Magic.

    I was just ready to write off the Magic for the season not passing the second round. But with Rafer Alston Magic may make it to the East finals, and who knows, may be beyond. Stan is such a great coach that with him at the helm anything is possible.

    GO MAGIC!!!!!!!!!!

  • At 4:47 PM, Blogger Mike from Illinois said…

    Wow, that was probably the most optimistic post I've ever seen from you, Matt!

    I'm just happy the trade was made to give the Magic a better chance of possibly advancing beyond the second round. There was no way the Magic advance beyond the second round if Rafer Alson isn't traded for. Heck, the Magic may not have made it past the first round!

    Now, at least there's hope the Magic can still contend for the Eastern Conference Championship.

  • At 5:29 AM, Blogger Matt said…


    I have no idea how that came about. I must have been on something!!!

  • At 12:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Does anyone know of a really good protective towel that I can use in the gym and in my car? I feel very uncomfortable while i drive after the work out.


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