Orlando Magic Waive Bol Bol, Opening Door For Kai Sotto's Potential Roster Spot

Photo: Instagram/Bol Bol

Orlando Magic made the decision to waive Bol Bol, the 7-foot-2 versatile big man, as announced on Tuesday (Wednesday, Manila time). However, despite this development, it is unlikely that the 7-foot-3 Kai Sotto will fill Bol's spot in the Magic lineup.

Bol had a successful season with Orlando, but he was ultimately released shortly after agreeing to extend the deadline for his $2.2 million team option. The team's decision was influenced by their roster constraints, particularly after re-signing Mo Wagner, exercising Goga Bitadze's team option, and acquiring Joe Ingles through free agency to bolster their frontcourt.

With Bol's departure, the Magic's roster has reached the league limit of 15 players, including their draft picks Anthony Black and Jett Howard, as well as the injured Jonathan Isaac, whose salary of $17.6 million for the upcoming season is partially guaranteed. Isaac underwent adductor surgery in March, and his salary will be fully guaranteed by January 10, 2024.

Photo: Instagram/Bol Bol 

The Magic's frontcourt is already filled with starters Wendell Carter Jr. and last season's Rookie of the Year Paolo Banchero, alongside Wagner, Bitadze, Ingles, and Chuma Okeke. The competition becomes even fiercer when Isaac returns from his injury.

As it stands, Sotto's chances of remaining in Orlando lie in securing a two-way contract. Each team can have up to three two-way players this season, who can divide their playing time between the G League and the NBA.

Currently, the Magic have only Kevon Harris signed to a two-way contract. However, since Sotto is an undrafted free agent, he can be picked up by any team outside Orlando and offered a standard contract.

To make an impression and increase his prospects, all he needs to do is excel in the Summer League. Bol endeared himself to fans in Orlando last season as he finally received an opportunity after being relegated to the bench during his first three NBA seasons with the Denver Nuggets.

The 44th overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft capitalized on the chance given to him by Magic coach Jamahl Mosley, showcasing the versatility and agility for his size that had made him a highly regarded 4-star recruit in high school. Bol posted averages of 9.1 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.0 assist, and 1.2 blocks in 21.5 minutes per game while shooting an impressive 54.6% from the field for the Magic.

He played in 70 games, significantly more than the combined total of his first three seasons. Despite starting in 33 games, Bol's future in Orlando took a downturn when he was demoted to the bench and ultimately excluded from the rotation toward the end of the season.

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Source: PhilStar


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