Magic Sign Gary Clark to Second 10-Day Contract
ORLANDO - When forward Gary Clark signed a 10-day contract with the Magic on Jan. 14, he did so after choosing Orlando over a handful of other teams that were in pursuit of his versatile skill set.
That mutual interest in one another lined up again on Wednesday when Clark and the Magic reunited on a second 10-day contract. The re-addition of Clark, who will continue to wear No. 12, gives the Magic 17 players on their roster, including the two-way contracts of B.J. Johnson and Vic Law.
Clark, a 6-foot-6 forward capable of playing multiple positions, impressed the coaching staff in his first game in Magic pinstripes when he scored 10 points, drilled two 3-pointers, grabbed four rebounds and blocked a shot in Orlando’s defeat of the Los Angeles Lakers on Jan. 15.
In five games with the Magic from January 15-22, Clark averaged 4.0 points, 3.6 rebounds while shooting 50 percent from the floor and 36.4 percent from 3-point range in 13.7 minutes per night.
The Magic (21-27) signed Clark to fortify a power forward position that has been decimated by injuries. Jonathan Isaac (sprained left knee) and Al-Farouq Aminu (right knee surgery) could miss the rest of the season with knee injuries. Orlando has also been without veteran point guard D.J. Augustin (bone irritation in his left knee) for the past eight games.
The Magic have one of their longest breaks of the season. They don’t play again until Saturday when they host the rival Miami Heat at the Amway Center. The Magic are 1-1 this season against the Heat, winning in Orlando on Jan. 3 and losing in Miami on Monday.
Clark, who went undrafted out of college following a stellar four-year-career at the University of Cincinnati, spent part of last season and this season with the Houston Rockets. He said he chose the Magic because of the strong culture the organization has in place with its bevy of promising young players. He credited Orlando’s coaching staff, primarily assistant coach Pat Delany, and his teammates with helping him quickly get up to speed and game ready.
``Just watching the way (the Magic) played when I played them before (while with Houston) and seeing all the young guys who are so hungry and play the right way, it’s amazing to go out there and do what we did,’’ Clark said after the Magic’s defeat of the Lakers in Los Angeles earlier in the month. ``I’m thankful to the coaching staff and every player here that made me feel comfortable right away, embraced me and made sure I knew what was going on – even though I looked like a chicken with my head cut off most of the possessions out there. Each guy was talking to me to make sure I knew what was going on.’’
At the expiration of his second 10-day contract, the Magic will have to make a determination of whether or not to sign Clark for the remainder of the season. Orlando had success in that venture last season, signing point guard Michael Carter-Williams for the remainder of the season after inking him to two 10-day contracts.
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