The Orlando Magic might be focusing on a youth movement, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have a capable veteran around to get critically important things done on the court. That’s what makes Arron Afflalo very valuable for the Magic next season.
Afflalo missed the last 12 games of the regular season from a strained hamstring. If he had stayed healthy, the Magic could have won a few more games, avoiding the 20-62 mark they achieved as the worst in the league.
But his sixth season in the NBA was an impressive one. He averaged 16.5 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. Those figures were quite a jump from his career in which he averaged 9.9 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.85 assists a game. He shot 43.9 percent from the floor and 30 percent in 3-pointers, but was an impressive 85.7 percent in free throws. For his career, he’s 45.9 percent in field goals, 38.3 percent in threes and 81.4 percent in free throws. He seemed to peak by mid-March as eventually, injuries got the best of him. Twice, he had 30-point games. He gave his team a lot of minutes for most of the season. His career average for minutes per game is 26.2, but for this season, it was 36.0 minutes a game.
That’s why it’s critical for Afflalo to get healthy and return to the Magic next season. He’s proven that he can carry his weight and make some good contributions. This past season was the best of his career. He’s hoping it will only get better and it probably will. That should make the Magic a more dangerous team next season.