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Have you ever pondered this question?  After reading TrueHoop today, Kelly Dwyer pointed out a valid point.  Perimeter shooting is at a premium in the NBA right now.  If you try and derive the reason why, you’d have to look where all the players are coming from.  College of course (well, mostly).  In College, the 3-line is 20 feet and 9 inches, where in the NBA it is 23 feet and 9 inches.  This extra 3 feet is pretty drastic for young shooters to get adjusted to, coming out of College.  The prime example I think about is J.J. Redick.  In College, this guy couldn’t miss.  I would always stand up for him in the J.J. or Adam Morrison debate.  He seemed like the perfect candidate to come into the league and start firing down some threes, just like how Jason Kapono has done so well.  Well if you caught a glimpse of J.J. this past season, you’ll know this wasn’t the case.  He had to adjust his shot for the extra 3 feet.  This is no easy task!  Think about it.  He has been shooting the 3-ball from the same distance since high school, right up until he finished his career at Duke.  He then comes in the league and everyone thinks he’s a dud.  I still see a future for this guy as a sharp shooter.  Again, Jason Kapono wasn’t even worth talking about until this past season, and now he’s making the big bucks.  This leads me to my initial question:  What if the college and NBA 3-point line were the same distance?  For one, perimeter shooters in the NBA would NOT be at a premium.  The transition into the NBA for shooters would be quite easy.  As long as the distance is the same, they will knock down these shots.  Guys like J.J. Redick would have been more useful and affective in their first season.  I’m sure the same was said for guys like Steve Kerr.  I’m sure his numbers weren’t all that pretty as a rookie.  Would the NCAA ever enact this type of change?  Probably not, but hey, it’s worth a ponder.

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The Magic just acquired Adonal Foyle, which makes the Magic’s frontcourt one of the most powerful in the league. Although Foyle had a weak season in ’06-’07, he is still capable of being a solid frontcourt partner of Dwight Howard and Rashard Lewis.   This was a terrific addition for the boys in blue, but is in enough?  I know I ask this question quite a bit, but when you look at the rest of the east, you have to ask yourself if you think that this powerful frontcourt is really enough to get the Magic deep into the playoffs.  The answer is no!  I don’t even believe these guys will make it past the first round.  I solely place the blame for my prediction on the Magic’s lack of backcourt.  That’s where it all starts.  Jameer Nelson and Hedo Turkoglu are as weak of a backcourt as the league has seen in recent years.  Nelson has yet to prove he is a good point guard in the league, and Turkoglu’s inconsistency will only become more significant as he gets less shots with Rashard Lewis in town.  With Carlos Arroyo and J.J. Redick coming off the bench, there’s just not much depth for the coach to dip into!  If these guys make it past the first round of the playoffs, I give everyone that has just read this to rub it in my face, but I have a feeling I won’t be getting any comments come that time of the season.

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Acquiring Rashard Lewis was a tremendous addition for the Orlando Magic. It is a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, it isn’t enough! What this means is that the Magic’s starting front line just received a big dose of energy. Unfortunately for them, they still have a very weak backcourt. Jameer Nelson having a very iffy season is not an ideal guy running the point, especially with such talented guys in the frontcourt. At the off guard, The Magic fiddled with Grant Hill, but odds are he’ll back leaving the team pretty soon. This leaves a huge vacancy for the team! The team could take two approaches to the situation. One, they can insert one of the younger guns, such as J.J. Redick or Keith Bogans and consider the year as “rebuilding”. As much as a Redick fan I used to be, this would just make me nauseous. The other, is try and make something happen with those still available in the market. My guess is that by bringing Rashard Lewis to the team means they’re all business! Why waste time when you have some outstanding talent on board? Would the Magic be that heartbroken to part with Nelson? He’s shown signs of being a solid point guard, but any team trying to contend needs more consistency. If would be in the teams best interest to put together a respectable package deal to target some better players. If they don’t, I really can’t see the Magic moving up in the standings, definitely not past Washington ( who was one place ahead of them in the East Standings). I’m curious to hear what you all think. Am I completely out of whack here, or are the Magic still a long ways away from being…great?

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Should the Magic part ways with Nelson?

Here is a great clip of Rashard Lewis.  He really is wicked player to watch…check it out!!!!