Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic said all the right things in the Magic’s exit interview with reporters on Thursday.
Vucevic has been a pleasant surprise ever since he joined the Magic as a part of the four-team trade that sent former franchise center Dwight Howard out of town in 2012. Vucevic, who at the time was a promising prospect in his rookie year with the Philadelphia 76ers, has made Magic fans forget all about Superman.
In his two seasons in a Magic uniform, Vucevic has averaged a double-double, including being ranked among the top big men in rebounds. Vucevic was on his way to another big season until his Achilles tendon began to act up on him. Instead of rushing the big fella back, the Magic decided to shut him down for the last eight games of the season.
It was a wise choice for the Magic, who were playing for nothing but pride at that point and the season was beyond lost. A healthy Vucevic will be paramount if the Magic have any chance of being in the playoff picture next season, which they should given the young talent on the roster.
In his exit interview on Thursday, Vucevic professed his love for the Magic and the city of Orlando. Vucevic told the reporters:
“I’d love to stay in Orlando. I like it here a lot. I like the team. I like what we have going here. I like the coaches. I like everything. So I’d love to stay here, but I guess we should talk about that when the time comes.”
It would benefit Vucevic greatly to remain in a Magic uniform for the foreseeable future. The Magic have playoff worthy talent in Victor Oladipo and Tobias Harris, and judging from what the team does in the 2014 NBA Draft, Orlando’s roster will be one the rest of the Eastern Conference could be envious of.
Vucevic loves Orlando, and Orlando loves Vucevic. Let’s see of the Magic front office can make this a long-term relationship.