The Orlando Magic are a league worst 5-20 right now, putting them in fifteenth place in the Eastern Conference. Orlando won the draft lottery last year and had the number one overall pick. They selected PF Paolo Banchero from Duke.
For the season, he’s averaging (21.7) points, (6.8) rebounds, and (3.8) assists per game. He leads the team in scoring and minutes played (34.4) this season. The Magic have struggled to find wins, but they have to be thrilled with the way Banchero is developing.
NBA betting sites have him at (-375) to win ROY this season. He’s highly skilled for a rookie and there’s no question why he was the number one overall pick. Banchero is an elite player in the post, and shoots 45 percent overall from the field.
including last night, Paolo Banchero has scored 20+ points in 12 of his 16 games played this season 🪄 pic.twitter.com/hbHH6GoCpF
— Orlando Magic (@OrlandoMagic) December 3, 2022
Magic’s rookie Paolo Banchero learning a lot in the NBA
In a periodic diary with the Associated Press, Banchero spoke to them for his second installment in the series. The last time he spoke to them was when the season had just begun.
“The first few weeks of my first NBA season, I would say it’s been a lot of learning, a lot of learning on the floor, off the floor, habits, learning what works, what routine works for me, stuff like that. And then just learning how this league is, how you got to bring it every night. You got to learn how to win. It’s not just going to be handed to you.” – Paolo Banchero
He spoke about how the NBA has been different for him in a number of ways. Banchero came from a winning program at Duke, to having the worst overall record in the NBA after eight weeks. The 20 year old was used to winning his entire life and has since then had to adjust to losing more than he’d like to.
“Everything off the court is smooth and everyone likes what we’re doing. It’s about just kind of trying to figure out how we can bring that camaraderie to the court, to the games and help each other win. And we’ve dealt with a lot of other stuff, injuries and whatnot. We just want to see each other get healthy. Then we can try and build.” – Paolo Banchero
It’s only his first season in the NBA and it will take time for he and the Magic to become a playoff caliber team. For now, all Banchero can do is continue to prepare the same way every night. Just continue to give 100 percent so at the end of the day he knows he gave it his all no matter what their record is at the end of the season.
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