The Orlando Magic still have All-Star center Dwight Howard on their roster, at least for the time being; however the “Orlando Sentinel” reported Sunday, that the team will soon be without talented, young forward Ryan Anderson as the Magic will send him to the New Orleans Hornets in a sign and trade deal. Anderson, who won the Association’s Most Improved Player Award this past season, is a restricted Free Agent and the paper reports he was on the verge of signing a four-year offer sheet said to be for $36 million from the Hornets.
Orlando’s new General Manager Rob Hennigan, did not feel that Anderson warranted that kind of contract and rather than allow him to just leave the club, he worked out a sign and trade deal with New Orleans. The Magic will receive 27-year-old center Gustavo Ayon, who is not going to make any fans of the team forget about Howard. The native of Mexico, played his first season in the Association with the Hornets this past campaign, averaging 5.9 points and 4.9 rebounds per contest.
Anderson started 61 games for Orlando and averaged 16.1 points and 7.7 rebounds, will most likely play alongside rookie forward Anthony Davis who New Orleans took with the number one pick in last month’s NBA Draft. The team is trying to rebound from a season in which they lost two All-Stars, as forward David West signed a Free Agent deal with the Indiana Pacers while Chris Paul was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers.
New Orleans Saints Team Owner Tom Benson purchased the Hornets during the season after the Association had been controlling it after buying the club from former Owner George Shinn. Benson, seems to not be wasting any time, trying to get his new team back to respectability.