After the Cleveland Cavaliers made former UNLV Runnin’ Rebels forward Anthony the number one overall pick of the 2012 NBA Draft, the Orlando Magic, who held the number two overall selection, took the top player on their board, former Indiana Hoosiers’ guard Victor Oladipo.
Oladipo was in and out of the lineup and played both point guard and shooting guard. Oladipo looked like a better fit at shooting guard and with Arron Afflalo now in Denver, he will likely see more time there. Of course, the Magic also waived point guard Jameer Nelson, who signed with the Dallas Mavericks, but they dealt for the 10th-overall pick in June’s draft, former Louisiana Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns’ point guard Elfrid Payton.
John Zitzler of Basketball Insiders thinks Oladipo should build off his strong rookie season and will see more time at his natural position of shooting guard.
It didn’t take long for Oladipo to break through with the Magic last season, cracking the starting lineup in just his 11th game as a pro. He had his ups and downs during his rookie campaign, as most rookies do, but on the whole the Magic had to be very encouraged by what they saw. His athleticism is undeniable, jumping off the screen in a league overflowing with magnificent athletes. Oladipo was able to use that elite athleticism to make plays on both sides of the floor. He finished year averaging 13.8 points, 3.6 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.6 steals. He spent time playing both point guard and shooting guard as the Magic experimented with a number a different lineups. However, this season, with the addition of rookie point guard Elfrid Payton, Oladipo figures to see the majority of his minutes at his more natural position, shooting guard. With Payton now expected to be the primary ball handler, Oladipo should see his turnover rate decrease. Look for Oladipo to continue to build off his strong rookie season with an even stronger showing in 2014-15.
As a rookie, Oladipo averaged 13.8 points, 4.1 assists and 4.1 rebounds per game while shooting 41.9% from the field, 32.7% from beyond the arc and 78.0% from the charity stripe.
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