Denton: Magic Complete Mega Trade Involving Redick; Gather More Financial Flexibility

By John Denton
February 21, 2013

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – In a move designed to secure more future salary cap flexibility and prevent losing a major asset without getting anything in return, the Orlando Magic made the difficult decision to trade shooting guard J.J. Redick on Thursday.

In a deal that was close to not happening at several points throughout the day on Thursday, the Magic traded Redick, veteran center Gustavo Ayon and reserve point guard Ish Smith to the Milwaukee Bucks for promising young players Tobias Harris and Doron Lamb and veteran point guard Beno Udrih just before the NBA’s 3 p.m. trade deadline.

In a separate trade, the Magic also acquired eighth-year forward Hakim Warrick from the Charlotte Bobcats in exchange for Josh McRoberts and an undisclosed amount of cash. The Bobcats had an expressed interest in acquiring McRoberts, while the incoming cash will be used to pay the rest of Warrick’s expiring contract.

The contract for Udrich also will expire at the end of this season, clearing more cap room for the Magic.

Redick, who will be a free agent at season’s end, had spent all seven of his NBA seasons with the Magic and was in the midst of a career season. But because of his steady growth and consistent production on the court this season, Redick is expected to command a salary of $8-10 million this offseason – an asking price that the Magic likely will not pursue as they continue to stockpile salary cap flexibility and promising young players.

Magic GM Rob Hennigan, who has already had to hire a new coach and execute the Dwight Howard blockbuster deal last August in his short time on the job, made the call to deal Redick to the Bucks. He knew that it would not be a popular decision in the eyes of many Magic fans, but he also knew it was the right thing to do for the franchise.

``This is a pressure business. It is what it is and we feel that pressure and embrace that pressure, but it’s something you have to look at from the big picture to get perspective,’’ Hennigan said. ``You understand that there are decisions that you make because you believe in the process. We believe in what we’re doing and the way that we make decisions and the research that we do. It’s our hope that our fans believe in that with us.

``My message (to fans) will be, first and foremost, I understand the emotional shockwave that you feel when someone you root for gets traded. That’s a natural response. Our job is to remove that emotion and focus on decisions that are in the best interest of the organization,’’ Hennigan added. ``With the rules the way they are, you have to be strategic and thoughtful and wise as to how you build your team and spend your money. We are trying to be methodical in what that looks like.’’

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