Orlando Magic Waive Hedo Turkoglu, Lakers and Hawks Reportedly Interested

Ben LeibowitzCorrespondent IIIJanuary 3, 2014

USA Today

The Orlando Magic have waived veteran forward Hedo Turkoglu, a move that has drawn interest from the Los Angeles Lakers and Atlanta Hawks.

Ismail Senol, a sportscaster for Turkish sports network NTV Spor, reported via Twitter that Turkoglu wants to stay in the NBA and noted the two teams interested:

The Lakers and Hawks are both seeking roster help after being bitten by the injury bug in 2013-14.

Los Angeles is playing without Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Steve Blake and Jordan Farmar. Pau Gasol has also missed time due to a sinus infection and bronchitis.

Atlanta's star player, Al Horford, is officially out for the season following surgery to repair a torn right pectoral muscle, according to Ben Golliver of Sports Illustrated.

While both teams are reportedly interested in signing Turkoglu, it’s unclear exactly what the 34-year-old can bring to the table.

The 13-year veteran hasn't played for the Magic this season, and played just 11 games (one start) for the Magic last season. He was dreadful in those games.

He averaged just 2.9 points and 2.4 rebounds per game with a player efficiency rating of 3.39. He shot 26.4 percent from the field overall and made 1-of-24 three-point attempts (4.2 percent).

Turkoglu’s level of play has been on a steady decline since the 2007-08 season when he averaged 19.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and five assists for Orlando. The deterioration of his play coincided with a five-year, $53 million contract he signed with the Toronto Raptors prior to the 2009-10 season.

After one season in Toronto, Turkoglu was traded to the Phoenix Suns in exchange for Brazilian guard Leandro Barbosa. He played 25 games in the desert before being traded back to Orlando, along with Jason Richardson, Earl Clark and a first-round pick for Vince Carter, Mikael Pietrus and Marcin Gortat.

Turkoglu never lived up to his hefty contract, but the Lakers and Hawks appear to think he’ll turn his fortunes around with a change of scenery.