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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Orlando Magic pre-draft profile: Jabari Valker of Colorado

Orlando Magic, owners of 1, 32 and 35 peaks in the NBA draft, will have more chances to be added to his list on June 23.

After starting the reconstruction in March 2021, Magic already has significant young talents. Orlando has nine players selected in the first round since 2017 who have signed contracts for the 2022-23 season.

Regardless, Magic has clear needs after finishing 20-60-22 with a score of 22-60.

As the list goes, Orlando needs a 3-and-D winger / striker – with an emphasis on reliable 3-point shooting – who has good size and length for his position. Magic could also use another big / center, depending on what happens to the limited free agency Mo Bamba.

After taking a step forward in their pre-draft estimates during the NBA Draft Combine in mid-May in Chicago, Magic has prospects for training ahead of the draft.

This story is part of a series about players that Magic interviewed or did in Orlando:

Jabari Walker, Colorado

Height: 6 feet-8 | Weight: 213 lbs Age: 19 | Wing span: 6-foot-10 3/4

Average for the 2021-22 season: 14.6 points (46.1% from the field – 51% in 2s, 34.6% in 3s), 9.4 rebounds and 1.2 assists.

the relationship: Done for Magic on June 4th

Note: Just because a player works for a team doesn’t mean he’s a draft target. A team that does not work on perspective also does not mean that it will not draw them. Six potential pre-draft players are allowed on the field at the same time and are not allowed on the field with NBA players. Some players asked for feedback from NBA teams before the June 1 deadline, college players had to decide whether to stay in the draft or retire and keep the remaining college conditions.

Buzzing: Son of former NBA player Samaki Walker, Walker has been named to the Pac-12 All-freshman team for the 2020-21 season after averaging 7.6 points (52.6% shots – 52.8% in 2s, 52.3% in 3s ) and 4.3 jumps. He was named the All-Pac-12 first team last season after leading the Buffalo in points and rebounds. The draft is expected to be drafted at the end of the second round.

Scout report: A great, athletic combo striker who should be able to keep 2-4. Fast enough to keep most players off the perimeter of space, long enough to recover and challenge most blows, and strong enough to defend larger attackers. He should advance as a one-on-one defender. A defensive player of good help and a protector on the edge of the weak side. He has made 59 of his 148 threes (39.9%) in college, including 43.5% in his last 18 games. A good shooter outside when his legs are set, but he will have to improve shooting out of motion and getting off the screen. He will also have to be more consistent in shooting outside the arc – he scored 21.4% of shots in the first 15 games of his second season. He can improve as a driver, self-creator and playmaker.

Fit: Walker would probably have to fight Chum Okeke and Franz Wagner during the game. The ability to play in any position forward would help him gain more time on the floor, as Magic has several players who will play forward. Orlando should improve the versatility and consistency of the shot so that he can help open the field for his playmakers.

This article first appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. Send Khobi Price an email khprice@orlandosentinel.com or follow him on twitter on @ khobi_price.

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