Orlando Magic Advised Against Signing Aging Klay Thompson

The Orlando Magic are reportedly interested in signing Golden State Warriors' star Klay Thompson, who will become an unrestricted free agent this summer. Former Warriors coach Mark Jackson believes the Magic should offer Thompson a modest contract, not the rumored $30 million annually.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Orlando Magic Advised Against Signing Aging Klay Thompson

Orlando Magic Advised Against Signing Aging Klay Thompson

As the Orlando Magic look to bolster their roster this offseason, they are reportedly eyeing Golden State Warriors' star Klay Thompson. However, ex, reveals former Warriors coach Mark Jackson believes signing the 34-year-old sharpshooter would be a mistake for the up-and-coming Magic.

Thompson, who will become an unrestricted free agent this summer, is coming off a season in which he averaged 17.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, and 2.3 assists while shooting 43.2% from the field and 38.7% from three-point range. While still a capable contributor, his production has declined in recent years. Last season marked the first time since 2013-14 that Thompson failed to average at least 20 points per game.

Jackson, who coached Thompson for three seasons in Golden State, believes the veteran guard still has "plenty in the tank" but suggests a more modest contract in the range of $20-25 million per year would be appropriate. The Magic, however, are rumored to be prepared to offer Thompson a deal worth $30 million annually.

While Thompson's shooting prowess could certainly help a Magic team that struggled from beyond the arc last season, his declining athleticism and defensive limitations at this stage of his career make such a hefty investment a risky proposition. Orlando already has a promising young core led by Paolo Banchero and would likely be better served using their ample cap space on younger, ascending talent.

Thompson made $43.2 million with the Warriors in 2023-24, the final year of a five-year, $190 million contract signed in 2019. If he re-signs with Golden State, he will almost certainly need to take a significant pay cut. But the allure of a lucrative long-term deal could lead the five-time All-Star to depart the only franchise he has ever known.

sign, free The Magic, who surprised many by making the playoffs as the fifth seed in the East this season, have over $60 million in projected cap space this summer. While adding a respected veteran like Thompson could help accelerate their timeline, the team may be better off pursuing younger free agents whose primes align better with their burgeoning core. As the start of free agency looms, the basketball world will be watching closely to see where Thompson lands and if Orlando heeds the advice of his former coach.

Key Takeaways

  • Orlando Magic eyeing Klay Thompson in free agency.
  • Ex-Warriors coach Mark Jackson thinks signing Thompson would be a mistake.
  • Thompson's production has declined, averaging 17.9 points last season.
  • Magic may offer Thompson $30 million annually, while Jackson suggests $20-25 million.
  • Magic have $60 million in cap space, may be better off pursuing younger free agents.