Orlando Magic

Orlando Magic suspended Jonathan Isaac today due to

Orlando Magic suspended Jonathan Isaac today due to..


Jonathan Isaac’s Rehabilitation and The Magic’s Future Are Still Unknown


One might argue that, in terms of the 2017 NBA Draft, the Magic missed out on players like Donovan Mitchell (Jazz), Bam Adebayo (Miami), and John Collins (now an Atlanta Hawk). In a technical sense, that is accurate. Really, the Magic probably would have selected a backcourt scorer—think Malik Monk or Dennis Smith Jr., for instance—had they not selected Isaac with the sixth overall choice in that draft.


Nevertheless, Isaac was a risk, a player selected by general manager John Hammond and team president Jeff Weltman due to his physical length and athletic promise. As a freshman at Florida State, Isaac did not have very impressive numbers (12.0 points, 7.8 rebounds). Prior to that, after graduating from high school, ESPN ranked Isaac as the 12th best prospect; nevertheless, the list was a wild one, with Harry Giles as the top recruit and Isaac coming in just below Monk, Frank Jackson, and Terrance Ferguson.


Isaac, then, was a good player in a subpar crop and never a sure thing. But the Magic need him to be so much more. This franchise is counting on Isaac, who is 22, as a cornerstone for the next four or five years and while the team has an investment in other young players—Markelle Fultz, Mo Bamba and, to a lesser extent, G-League player Chuma Okeke—Isaac is the guy who has the most potential, the guy who will determine how high the Magic’s ceiling can be.


That was the sense on Monday, with Isaac returning to the floor to play for the first time since January 1, when he suffered a knee injury that was originally slated to keep him out for two months but was deemed to be season-ending when it was later re-evaluated. The four-month delay in restarting the season after it was suspended because of coronavirus in March gave Isaac the chance to get back on the floor for the rebooted 2019-20 season.


The mere appearance of Isaac in a scrimmage against the Nuggets on Monday seemed to be enough to lift not only his teammates, but the entire franchise. The way Isaac produced in the seven minutes he spent on the floor—13 points on 5-for-6 shooting, including 2-for-2 from the 3-point line, with 7 rebounds and 2 steals—helped inject some enthusiasm into the Magic’s remaining schedule.




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