The limitless potential of the Orlando Magic and their prized rookie, Victor Oladipo
In a typical bingo game, players attentively wait as the barker calls out each number while crossing their fingers, hoping that someone – other than them – won’t hit their prizewinning number. This scenario adds to the thrill that comes from all the barking, the marking, and the winning patterns of bingo. In a way, this popular game of chance becomes more synonymous to the NBA draft and every franchise’s general manager, coach, and fans’ hopes towards building a solid future.
After the whole Dwight Howard nightmare, the Orlando Magic has become a dismal team to say the least. They went from being the 2009 Eastern Conference champions to cellar dwellers in the overall team standings. Coming off on one of their worst seasons in franchise history, which saw an NBA worst 20-62 win-loss record, the Magic had high hopes in the shallow, yet highly-capable 2013 draft class. They had the best chances of getting the first pick. They were one winning ball away from shouting “Bingo!” until the Cleveland Cavaliers came out of nowhere and burst their bubble.
The Barclays Center was filled with excitement. General Managers had their respective picks and, just like in a game of bingo, hoped that teams ahead of them won’t have the same “winning number.” By the time Commissioner David Stern announced that the Cavs selected UNLV forward, Anthony Bennett, everyone was caught by surprise; including the Orlando Magic. On the other hand, it felt like they were destined to win a Cheekybingo.com jackpot after their primary choice, Indiana junior, Victor Oladipo’s number was still on the board. Oladipo impressed the Magic staff during the 2013 NBA Summer League with his versatility, especially as an offensive facilitator – averaging 19 points, five assists and a 54% clip behind the arc. He played both guard positions quite well, which prompted bizarre basketball analyst, Clark Kellogg, to say “Victor Oladipo is like a baby’s bottom, smooth and sometimes… explosive!”
Victor Oladipo joins a rebuilding Orlando Magic team full of young and talented players. And though it won’t be a quick turnaround back to title contention, with a potentially strong core of Nikola Vucevic, Glen Davis, Tobias Harris, and Arron Afflalo; Oladipo’s jersey number 5 may just be a significant step for Orlando to put their “Magic touch” in forming the winning bingo pattern.