The Orlando Magic are still on the outside looking in of the Play-In Tournament in the Eastern Conference, but the franchise is on the rise. The team has already matched its 22-win total from last season and is only getting better behind the young core of Rookie-of-the-Year favorite Paolo Banchero and second-year wing Franz Wagner.
The Magic could be buyers before the Feb. 9 trade deadline and multiple sources have told Matt Moore of The Action Network that "there’s real interest from the Magic in Raptors point guard Fred VanVleet." The 28-year-old veteran would bring some needed experience to the team as it looks to take its next step forward.
VanVleet is in the final year of his contract and has passed on a four-year, $114 million extension, the most Toronto can offer him before the offseason. He recently switched representation and the belief is that he's looking to get a long-term deal that averages between $30 million and $35 million per year.
Moore adds that former No. 3 overall pick Jalen Suggs could be part of a deal along with draft compensation. However, the under-performing Raptors have been very busy leading up to the trade deadline, with teams around the league showing interest in VanVleet along with Pascal Siakam, O.G. Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr.
Following a slow start to the season, VanVleet has picked up his play over the past few weeks. He is now averaging 19.7 points, 4.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists while shooting 39.7% from the field and 34.7% on three-pointers.