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Head scratching report: Magic reach terms with Ben Gordon for two-year $9 million deal

Jul 2, 2014, 1:49 PM EDT

Charlotte Bobcats v Phoenix Suns Getty Images

It’s good to be a shooting guard in the NBA this summer — first Jodie Meeks got overpaid and then the Celtics gave Avery Bradley considerably more than anyone else would have. But at least with those two guys you are getting some on the court skills, they are both good shooters, Meeks played well for the Lakers last year and Bradley shot 40 percent from three.

This one just makes no sense.

Ben Gordon, who was released by the Bobcats last season, has a new two-year, $9 million deal in Orlando, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. There are conflicting reports but David Aldridge of TNT and says the second year of that deal is a team option.

He will be in the swingman rotation with Victor Oladipo and Evan Fournier, that is if Gordon gets on the court much.

Last season Gordon played 279 minutes total in 19 games for the Bobcats, battling some injuries but basically quitting on a team that was all about hustle and effort. He was petulant and when he wouldn’t help with a buyout the Bobcats waived him one day after the deadline for him to sign up with another team and make their playoff roster.

Why did Orlando — a franchise that preaches character as a top asset and has a lot of young players on the roster — sign him again?

Gordon is on the wrong side of 30 and showed some declining skills last season. He’s a career 40 percent shooter from three but is generally just average or below it in terms of scoring efficiency and he can be a gunner at times. Maybe he can find that scoring touch again.

If some team offered Gordon a two-year deal at the league minimum (second year with a player or team option) so he could try to prove he belongs in an NBA rotation again, I could see that. That’s a reasonable roll of the dice. Nobody was going to offer much more.

Two years at $4.5 million per? Well, as Mark Deeks noted he does have the same agent as Oladipo. Or maybe, as Zach Lowe noted, Magic are way below the salary floor right now so maybe they hope Gordon rehabilitates his career enough again to be a good trade piece for them closer to the deadline.

Other than that I got nothing. Orlando could have gotten a better player for that money.

  1. irvness21 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:02 PM

    Salary Cap minimum!! Orlando has to pay somebody.

    • 88heatnation - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:25 PM

      Anyone but Gordon

    • stoudemelo - Jul 2, 2014 at 6:13 PM

      There is no penalty for being under the minimum, the amount is spread between those on the roster.

      Spread between those who earned it

  2. kb2408 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:02 PM

    I would say he’s been stealing money since he left Chicago. But general managers have voluntarily given him millions.

    • kinggw - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:16 PM

      Indeed. I thought he was going to end up with one of the contenders at a vet minimum.

  3. felser - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:04 PM

    And this is on top of the Afflalo giveaway and the gross overpayment with the Sixers to move up two spots in the draft. What is going on there?

    • iceonmypinky85 - Jul 2, 2014 at 9:00 PM

      Simply amazing how half of these GM’s have a job.

  4. rrhoe - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:04 PM

    I smell a lockout on the horizon,these signings are further proof these franchises need protection from themselves.

    • limonadamas - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:42 PM

      So… we’re going to punish the players even more because management is incompetent? Makes a ton of sense… smh

  5. adoombray - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:12 PM

    Salary Floor signing for the next couple of years, next year he becomes a 4 million expiring which rounds out a good trade. im starting to think the press is fishing for “THATS RIDICULOUS” clicks rather than actually attempting to evaluate the signings. it must drive traffic more than stating the obvious

    • davidtmp - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:18 PM

      It “could” make it an expiring contract this year too, correct? If there is a team option for next year, couldn’t a team include him in a trade knowing they aren’t picking up the option at the end of the season.
      Not sure why anyone would want the bum on their team in the first place, but that’s another story.

    • asimonetti88 - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:11 PM

      It’s obviously a salary floor signing. But it still makes no sense. Better players you can sign for that money.

      • geejon - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:24 PM

        Teams don’t need to reach the salary floor until the end the year … not the start. Orlando didn’t have to do this right now. Even if they don’t reach the floor the only penalty is however far below the floor the team is the $ gets spread out amongst the guys on the roster so its no penalty at all really. They could have gone the whole year below the floor or absorbed some team’s salary dump at any point and probably picked up a 2nd round pick from them for their “trouble” as well. Lots of ways they could have played this, but to sign a no-game having malcontent to that deal makes ZERO sense.

      • fatcamper - Jul 2, 2014 at 4:12 PM

        I don’t disagree, but Orlando isn’t looking for better players. Unfortunately this is a bad character guy too.

  6. handsomerob86 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:34 PM

    You have got to be kidding me! 4.5mil a year for Gordon, is it 2009? Wth Hennigan! These moves are starting to look very questionable!

  7. reesesteel23 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:39 PM

    Brb. Going to hire an agent while the getting is still good

  8. pl4tinum514 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:58 PM

    Maybe they needed a contract to use in a deal…?

  9. deepfreezerob - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:01 PM

    Magic gives away Affalo and signs Gordon? Does Joe Dumars work in Orlando? His protégée Scott Perry does

  10. deepfreezerob - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:01 PM

    Magic gives away Affalo and signs Gordon? Does Joe Dumars work in Orlando? His protégée Scott Perry does

  11. deepfreezerob - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:01 PM

    Magic gives away Affalo and signs Gordon? Does Joe Dumars work in Orlando? His protégée Scott Perry does

  12. sportsfan18 - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:08 PM


    I’m going to keep saying this… even though ya’ll laugh at me and put me down for it…

    I said this when they made the bad trade of Afflalo (didn’t get enough in return)

    I said it when they waived Jameer Nelson a few days ago instead of holding onto him and possibly trading him as things change among all teams over time (injuries – can we say Boris Diaw?) but the Magic lost all leverage by getting rid of him.

    Now they overpay by like 4 to 5 times for a bad player…

    The Orlando Magic are the Factory of Sadness, southern edition…

  13. ravenswhat - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:09 PM

    The Orlando Sunshine must be baking the gm’s brain.

  14. t81o - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:48 PM

    I agree that I didn’t like trading Afflalo; though I disagree with comments that suggest we could’ve gotten more for him…Hennigan obviously tried trading him all of last season with no bites. I think as Magic fans we overvalued him…he played well at the start of last season, but his play fell off as the season progressed…the coaches did not think he was good enough for an allstar bid…having said that, I liked his veteran presence for all the young guys.

    But why are people upset over this signing and the Nelson move? Gordon is probably going to be the 3rd string PG/SG. As long as he doesn’t take minutes from the young guys, I’m ok with this signing. Sure, it’s more money than he deserves, but the Magic have to pay someone. And as long as this does not cut into the salary in a couple years, then who cares? And please tell me a better player who the Magic could’ve gotten for this money AND who also wouldnt be taking minutes from the young guys? GMs are signing guys to crazy contracts, so I can’t imagine anyone would be cheaper.

    As for Nelson, while I’m a fan of his, it was time to move on. He couldnt lead the Magic to a championship (one could argue he cost the Magic their best chance at one), he was a poor shooting, shoot first PG. He never made an allstar game in his career. So what could we have gotten in return for him? He’s one of those guys that home fans love and over value his skill and value. Great community guy, and another vet I’d have loved to have around the young guys. But the Magic clearly didn’t want to pay him $8M, and they clearly want the young guys to play point. So it was only fair to cut Jameer now and let him try to choose the best team for him (rather than wait until after most teams have signed FAs and he’s stuck choosing from only a couple teams).

    • 00maltliquor - Jul 2, 2014 at 8:55 PM

      You’re a Magic fan? Jameer DID make an All-Star game. One time.

    • jusdre313 - Jul 3, 2014 at 2:18 AM

      dont think it was jameer that cost you the championship.. it was SVG letting him start in the finals over alston after he had missed most of the season..

  15. gbart22 - Jul 2, 2014 at 4:40 PM

    I wish I had been born 7ft tall and been born with basketball skills. You can be a terrible mediocre player play for a season or 2 mostly stink and still walk out with enough money to lAst your lifetime and if you’re smart with it longer

  16. campcouch - Jul 2, 2014 at 4:46 PM

    Ben Gordon will own a team one day. The current group are bankrolling him for it.

  17. Mr. Wright 212 - Jul 2, 2014 at 7:06 PM

    The only way you can get CLOSE to avoiding tanking is to make a mandatory cap floor with no exceptions or loopholes like the ones you have at the top end of the cap.

  18. weaselpuppy - Jul 2, 2014 at 10:54 PM

    In other news, Joe Dumars was sighted at Disney the same day…

  19. tardyman - Jul 3, 2014 at 3:32 AM

    Confused him with Aaron Gordon perhaps??

  20. mnsadsportsfan - Jul 3, 2014 at 7:28 AM

    Wow this guy still plays??

  21. ebecks34 - Jul 3, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    I smell a future trade bait, that’s the only plausible explanation. Second year is a team option, otherwise…

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