The Magic are 23-29 on the season and need something good to come out of this trade. Jennings comes to Orlando post-recovery from an Achilles tear. In his 23 games since returning, Jennings is averaging only 18 minutes a game with 6.8 points, and 3.0 assists. Ilyasova is averaging 11.3 points and 5.4 rebounds in the 52 games he has played.
“We’re right there. We just have a hard time closing these [close] games out. We’re not saying [the trade is] going to solve all of those problems now, but we think this is a step in the right direction” Magic GM Rob Hennigan said Tuesday.
Both Jennings and Ilyasova know Magic head coach Scott Skiles well. Both men played for Skiles during his Milwaukee Bucks coaching stint.
The Magic gain 2 players but lose a strong talent. Harris, a 23-year-old power forward, signed a $64 million deal last year with the Magic. He goes to the Pistons averaging 13.7 points and 7.0 rebounds a game this season. Hennigan told the media that trading Harris was not an easy decision. The Magic GM also thanked Harris for his time in Orlando.
The Pistons (27-27) are a half a game behind Charlotte in the hunt for the final spot for the playoffs this year. The Magic are 3 1/2 games behind Charlotte.
The NBA trade deadline is Thursday at 3 p.m.