NBA Mock Draft: Magic Land Versatile Defender

The Orlando Magic potentially addressed their need at guard with their first-round pick in Bleacher Report's mock draft.
Mar 13, 2024; New York City, NY, USA; Providence Friars guard Devin Carter (22) controls the ball
Mar 13, 2024; New York City, NY, USA; Providence Friars guard Devin Carter (22) controls the ball / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

ORLANDO — For the first time in a long time, the Orlando Magic could watch the NBA Draft Lottery on Sunday without bated breath.

With the NBA Draft lottery in the rearview mirror, the picture is a little clearer on who could potentially be available when the Magic are on the clock with the No. 18 overall pick. In Bleacher Report's mock draft, they had Orlando taking Providence Friars guard Devin Carter.

"Unteachable defensive intensity, toughness and instincts separate Carter and fuel his identity, though he's entered the lottery conversation by developing into a dangerous shotmaker and crafty pick-and-roll ball-handler," Bleacher Report writes.

Carter, whose player comp was Boston Celtics guard Derrick White, was the Big East Player of the Year after averaging 19.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 3.6 assists across 33 games in his junior season. He also improved his 3-point shooting significantly from his sophomore season, improving from 29.9 percent to 37.7 from beyond the arc.

White averaged 15.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.2 rebounds and shot 39.6 percent on his 3-point attempts for the No. 1 seed Celtics in the regular season. Through eight playoff games, the veteran guard has averaged 19.9 points, 3.6 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game.

Carter's shot-making would address a pivotal need for Orlando and he could also step in for Gary Harris or Markelle Fultz if they leave in free agency. The 6-foot-3 guard's versatility and intensity would also aid his fit for Magic head coach Jamahl Mosley.

There's still over a month until the draft, and whether Orlando will even be making this pick remains to be seen, as it could shop it for a proven player to help its push from playoff team to contender. But if the Magic end standing pat, few players appear to be a better fit than Carter, and if he one day becomes comparable to White, the pick could be a home run.

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Nathaniel Marrero

NATHANIEL MARRERO