What happens to the rest of the roster?
The Magic currently carry 11 contracts. The league minimum is 13 and the max is 15. It is believed most NBA teams will carry only 13 players this season due to financial concerns. More on that later.
Below is some semblance of a depth chart. Since I can't tell if SVG cares about the difference between a SF and PF I lumped the forwards together.
From TrueHoop today:
To save money, many teams (even the wealthy Lakers) have decided to carry short rosters -- just 13 players, instead of the allowed 15. On opening night, there could be 30 or 40 fewer NBA jobs than a year ago. At the same time, dozens of draftees and imported free agents (everyone from David Andersen with the Rockets to new Bull Jannero Pargo) have already filled roster spots.The Magic too are likely to only carry 13 on the roster. Particularly since they have that trade exception and could possibly create a 2 for 1 trade later in the year. They are also out of the ability to offer anything other than the veterans minimum to players.
As of this morning there are 381 signed players. If every team sticks to a roster of 13, just 24 more will get contracts. (As many as 71 could get jobs -- that would put every roster at the maximum 15). Meanwhile Chad Ford lists 40 notable free agents, from David Lee to Morris Almond. The full list is at 70.
Do the math. Forced retirement is a quiet reality of every summer. This year, the musical chairs could be especially harsh.
Looking at the depth chart, it seems the current needs are, in order:
- 3rd point guard. Johnson played well last year, but Van Gundy failed to use him at all in the Finals. That's kind of telling, even if he had Nelson and Alston.
- Ideally a F/C tall guy who can serve as emergency 3rd Center or fifth forward
- Another forward
There is a rumor that Bruce Bowen may be interested in playing for Orlando. Do you take him if he wants to come here? I think so, if only to see him sticking his feet under LeBron or Kobe when he launches a jump shot. It sounds like he is thinking about retiring, or moving to Florida. (Didn't that used to mean the same thing?)
If Bowen comes, that third Center role has to come from Brandon Bass (6'8" but a large frame) or Ryan Anderson who looks kind of thin for the role.
The best backup PG available may be Flip Murray from Atlanta if he will settle for the Vets minimum. CJ Watson is a restricted free agent and wants more than the minimum. Another could be Damon Jones who played for Van Gundy in Miami(?) or Jason Williams who recently unretired.