- Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “Matt Barnes will test the free-agent market this summer. Barnes said minutes ago that he will not exercise his player option for the 2010-11 season, but he added that he hopes to return to the Orlando Magic. ‘As for me and my contract situation, I’m going to opt out,’ Barnes told reporters gathered at RDV Sportsplex this morning. ‘Always worrying about the team and stuff like that is something you have to do during the season, and I’m 100 percent with that. But now it’s about me and my family and what’s best for us. I’ve expressed throughout the season that I’ve loved my time here and would love to return. But I think I know more than anybody that this is a business. The organization has to do what’s best for the team. Hopefully, I impressed them enough to bring me back and give me something decent, but we’ll have to wait and see about that.’ ”
- More from Robbins: “Dwight Howard acknowledged Monday that he might not play for Team USA in the FIBA World Championship late this summer in Turkey.”
- George Diaz of the Orlando Sentinel states that general manager Otis Smith will need to make a decision about Vince Carter‘s future with the Orlando Magic sooner rather than later: “Will Carter be one of those 13 guys in 2010-11? It would be a neat thing if Carter stuck around. This is home for him. He’s a good guy with his teammates and a stand-up guy with the media. He does worthy charitable work, including a drug and alcohol rehab center in Flagler County. But all of that stuff often has very little to do with the business of basketball. Carter has an expiring contract, always a valuable asset for teams looking to unload big money. At some point soon, the Magic will need to decide whether Carter is worth keeping for another run, or look into the possibility of trading him. It would be disappointing to see him go. But admitting failure is the less painful than sticking with a plan that isn’t working. Carter needs to be the guy who had a strong latter half of the season, including the 48-point bomb he dropped on New Orleans.”
- John Denton of OrlandoMagic.com sits down with Smith for a Q/A session and asks him a variety of questions concerning the Magic. Some answers from Smith were somewhat revealing, like this one: “I think that we can [win a championship with Rashard Lewis at power forward]. I don’t think that is the issue. I think we have enough bodies to play the way that we want to play and win. I’m not one of those guys who subscribe to the theory that we need another power forward. I’ll put that right next to the idea that we need another center. That’s not what I subscribe to at all. We have the right collection of people to get the job done but collectively we didn’t get it done.”
- Rob Mahoney of ProBasketballTalk: “Orlando will likely make an effort to keep him, but from the sound of things it seems like Barnes’ decision will come down to the money. Tough to blame him, as he’s hardly locked in for huge, mega-deals for the rest of his career and his biggest payday yet was a $3 million, one-year deal from the Warriors in ’07-’08. We’ll have to wait and see whether or not the Magic will give Barnes the most lucrative offer, but they could definitely use his services next season.”
- Mickael Pietrus‘ hairdo netted him $17,000 this year.
Otis doesn't have the pieces to lure a superstar. Maybe in a sign-and-trade but it's highly unlikely that the Magic will acquire a big-time player.
I like what Barnes brings to the table but he's replaceable if he needs to be replaced. Morrow is a little rough around the edges and the Magic would have to play him at the shooting guard position, which would pose a problem if Carter is around, but he'd be a good fit.