Orlando Magic NBA Mock Draft Roundup

Leading up to the 2023 NBA Draft, we will update our Orlando Magic Mock Draft Roundup showing picks for the Orlando Magic from several prominent sites and draft analysts.

The following are picks in recent mock drafts for the Magic:

The Rookie Wire — Cody Taylor (5/19)

6. Jarace Walker, Houston

The quest to win back-to-back No. 1 picks fell short of the mark on Tuesday as the Magic were awarded the sixth selection. The team has the opportunity to add another piece to a roster that features Paolo Banchero, Markelle Fultz, Jalen Suggs, Franz Wagner and others. The Magic have often been a team that has taken the best player available in the draft and that shouldn't change this year.

Walker, who was the AAC Freshman of the Year, would arrive in Orlando as a tremendous defender that can "sit down and guard," as Jamahl Mosley likes to say. He measured in with a 7-foot, 2.5-inch wingspan at the draft combine, something that the Magic will love. Outside of his defense, Walker showed that he can be a capable shooter at the next level after converting 34.7% from distance.

11. Gradey Dick, Kansas

The Magic have a second lottery pick due to the trade involving Nikola Vucevic two years ago. The front office is excited about the opportunity to continue to build the roster by adding two high picks and is eager to begin meeting with those prospects projected in this range.

Dick is a player that could step in and fill an immediate need for the Magic: 3-point shooting. He set the Jayhawks freshman record for most 3s in a season (83) after shooting 40.3% shooting from 3-point range. The Magic desperately need shooting so Dick could be the pick here.

CBS Sports — Gary Parrish (5/17)

6. Anthony Black, Arkansas

The Magic have promising frontcourt players but could really use comparable young guards. Black has a chance to be one thanks to the fact that he has great size for his position and the ability to make incredible passes and make plays out of pick-and-rolls.

11. Keyonte George, Baylor

I have the Magic taking a big point guard with their first pick in this draft, so this is a decent spot to grab a backcourt partner. George wasn't the most consistent freshmen in the country in his one season at Baylor, but his ability to navigate pick-and-rolls, put pressure on defenses and score is undeniable.

Sporting News — Kyle Irving (5/17)

6. Ausar Thompson, Overtime Elite

The Magic are set in the frontcourt with Paolo Banchero, Franz Wagner and Wendell Carter Jr. In Ausar, Orlando will add another tenacious backcourt defender with a much-needed scoring prowess.

Ausar is the second Thompson twin projected to be selected in the top 10 of this year's draft. He filled out his trophy case over the Overtime Elite season, earning regular season MVP, Finals MVP and a championship with the City Reapers.

Like his brother, he is an explosive athlete who cuts through defenses off of the dribble to get to the rim. Ausar is a swarming and versatile defender and his playmaking grew considerably during this past season. He has similar questions surrounding his jump shot, but Ausar showed enough growth in other areas of his game to still warrant near-top-five consideration.

11. Keyonte George, Baylor

The Magic have an opportunity to add two young, talented guards to the mix with their lottery picks. After taking the more defensive-minded Ausar Thompson at No. 6, they should target an offensive weapon like George at No. 11.

George didn't help his draft stock during the NCAA Tournament, shooting 3-for-19 from the field and 1-for-10 from 3 over two games before Baylor was eliminated in the Round of 32. That is the type of volatility you should come to expect from the freshman guard, as he exudes a level of confidence on the offensive end that makes you feel like every shot is a heat check on the brink of a game-breaker.

With that being said, George is a pro-caliber shot-creator and shot-maker and I'd be willing to bet on his tools to be an impactful scorer and distributor at the next level, but he has to polish up his shot selection and decision-making. The highs are high enough to deserve near-top 10 consideration.

The Athletic — Sam Vecenie (5/16)

6. Taylor Hendricks, UCF

The Scout: Hendricks is the biggest riser of this draft class. He's over 6-9 in shoes and has over a 7-foot wingspan. He's an elite defensive player and has real athleticism. He slides his feet incredibly well as an on-ball defender and has real switchability. Off the ball, he's very impactful as a weakside rim protector who can fly over in help situations and block shots. And offensively, Hendricks was very valuable. He averaged 15.1 points and seven rebounds while shooting 39.4 percent from the field on real volume. Hendricks need to improve as an offensive playmaker and ballhandler. But it's easy to imagine Hendricks stepping into the NBA early and playing relatively early as a useful 3-and-D player while he continues to round out his game.

The Fit: The Magic love guys like Hendricks who are long, athletic and have high upside. On top of that, Hendricks actually fills a real need as a shooter for a team that really could use one. The team finished in the bottom 10 in the NBA in 3-point rate, and the Magic shot just 34.6 percent this season. They obviously have a lot of this player type already, but he's a skill-level fit the team likely envisioned when they drafted Chuma Okeke as a valuable multi-positional player a few years ago. This is definitely the high-end of his range, but Hendricks starts getting in play here.

11. Gradey Dick, Kansas

The Scout: Dick is maybe the best shooter in the class, a 6-8 freshman who drilled 40.3 percent of his six 3-point attempts per game. The list of high-major true freshmen in the last 30 years, per Sports-Reference, to average 14 points and shoot 40 percent from 3 while taking at least 200 3s is limited. It's Dick, Gary Trent, Kevin Durant, D'Angelo Russell, O.J. Mayo, Tajuan Porter and Jamal Murray. That's a pretty great list, given that it's five NBA starters and Porter, who was 5-7. Dick profiles as a long-term NBA starter with real upside. He has some on-ball defensive concerns, but he has great hands and is smart rotationally in a team construct. He knows how to play.

The Fit: The Magic need shooting around Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner, especially if they're going to continue with a backcourt core of Markelle Fultz and Jalen Suggs. Dick is an elite shooter. This is an easy one.

Yahoo! Sports — Krysten Peek (5/16)

6. Jarace Walker, Houston

Walker's size and defensive versatility make him an intriguing prospect inside the top 10. He has the most NBA-ready frame for a big and is comfortable stepping outside the paint and knocking down shots. His rim protection is what shined in the tournament, recording 12 blocks in three games and recorded a 7-foot-2.5 wingspan at the NBA Draft Combine testing on Monday. Offensively, his shot-creation off the dribble remains a work in progress, and while he's a proficient spot-up shooter, there are some limitations to his offensive game extended past the 3-point line.

11. Keyonte George, Baylor

The Magic might look to trade this pick, but if they do keep it, they could add another playmaking guard like George out of Baylor. George had an up-and-down season at Baylor but one thing is loud and clear, he can score from all over the court and isn't afraid to have the ball in his hands in big moments or at the end of the shot clock. He's a natural scorer and averaged 17.5 points and 3 assists per game and got to the line 5.3 times each game.

Bleacher Report — Jonathan Wasserman (5/16)

6. Ausar Thompson, Overtime Elite

Thompson has the chance to sway some hesitant executives during workouts with enough comfortable shooting that points to achievable improvement. Regardless, he's going to bring Orlando instant transition offense, easy baskets and defensive pressure/versatility while his creation and shot-making skills gradually develop. He's going to give the Magic lineup a jolt of athleticism it's currently missing.

11. Keyonte George, Baylor

With two lottery selections and a rotation full of young prospects, Orlando figures to explore trade scenarios. But George's shot-making would also work well in the rotation, either at the starting 2-guard spot or for a bench-scoring role.

SB Nation — Ricky O'Donnell (5/16)

6. Taylor Hendricks, UCF

No one expected Taylor Hendricks to be a one-and-done when he arrived at UFC as the No. 84 recruit in his class, per 247 Sports. Fast forward six months, and Hendricks is suddenly one of the hottest names in this draft with real potential to go in the top-10. The 6'9 forward checks a lot of boxes teams are looking for in a modern four: he can protect the rim a bit (his 6.2 percent block rate ranked No. 94 in the country), he can hit a spot-up three (39 percent from deep this year), and he can finish plays above the rim as a dunker. Hendricks doesn't have a ton of juice off the dribble which limits his upside, but he's impressive defensively and should space the floor on offense, which is something every team is looking for.

11. Gradey Dick, Kansas

Dick is the favorite to earn the 'best shooter in the class' label. The 6'8 freshman made 40.3 percent of 206 attempts on three-pointers this year, mostly on shots his teammates created for him. With deep range and a quick release, Dick is the sort of shooter opposing defenses have to stay glued to, and that opens things up for everyone else. While he's not super fast sprinting around screens, Dick does have movement shooter potential because he's able to quickly square himself to the basket to fire a shot. He also showed that he can attack a closeout and get into a one dribble mid-range pull-up when he needs to. Dick shouldn't be counted on to attack off the bounce much, and his defense will be a big question mark early in his career. Still, it's hard to find 6'8 guys who can shoot as well as he can, and that should make him a lotto pick.

CBS Sports — Kyle Boone (5/16)

6. Anthony Black, Arkansas

Black had a great freshman season with Arkansas and profiles as a connective tissue in the NBA because of his size, skill, scoring and playmaking. With Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner in place he could be a key piece in the backcourt to help expand Orlando's offensive system.

11. Cason Wallace, Kentucky

Perhaps Orlando looks elsewhere here after going guard with its first pick in this mock, but Wallace's skill set is so different and complementary to Black that the two could coexist successfully. One of the best playmaking defenders in this class.

For the Win — Bryan Kalbrosky (5/16)

6. Ausar Thompson, Overtime Elite

Ausar Thompson was named MVP of Overtime Elite in 2022-23 and he led all players in C-RAM during the regular season for OTE, per Cerebro Sports. He had the highest defensive statistical impact (DSI) among players with more than 10 games in Cerebro-certified events in the league.

He also allowed only 0.60 defensive points per chance, per AI-Powered statistics provided by Stats Perform. That ranked second-best among all consensus top-100 prospects.

Most encouraging, though, is that he increased his 3-point efficiency from 30.0 percent on 3.8 attempts per game in the regular season to 38.5 percent on 7.8 attempts per game during the postseason.

11. Gradey Dick, Kansas

Any team looking for 3-point shooting in this class has the name Gradey Dick underlined and highlighted on their big boards.

Despite a slump toward the end of his one-and-done campaign, Dick still ended his season shooting an excellent 40.3 percent on 3-pointers.

But perhaps most impressive is the shooting gravity that he will provide. The All-Big 12 forward forced a closeout on 28.7 percent of his offensive touches, per AI-Powered statistics provided by Stats Perform. That is the highest among all projected first-round draft picks.

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