Orlando Magic: The Case for J.J. Redick

Steve ResnickCorrespondent IJanuary 9, 2008

Consider these stats: 3-18 from the field, two rebounds, one assist.

That hardly looks like a line from a basketball player who in 2006 won such awards as...

The ACC Player of the Year, ACC MVP, Adolph F. Rupp Trophy Player of the Year, The Sporting News National Player of the Year, United States Basketball Writers Association's Oscar Robertson Trophy College Basketball Co-Player of the Year, Naismith College Player of the Year National Player of the Year, John R. Wooden Player of the Year Award, National Association of Basketball Coaches Co-Player of the Year, James E. Sullivan Award, and the Anthony J. McKelvin Award (ACC Athlete of the Year for all sports).

However, that was J.J. Redick's line after Duke University's stunning 2006 loss to Louisiana State University in the NCAA tournament. 

Redick will go down as one of the best college basketball players in the history of the sport. Not only did he win more than 10 awards in his four years at Duke—he also broke such NCAA records as career three-pointers made and career total points scored, and finished his career as the leading scorer in ACC Tournament history.

Keeping all this in mind, who wouldn't want Redick on their NBA team?

He's a stunning shooter and would, arguably, give Kobe Bryant a run for his money in a game of 21.

Redick finished his college career averaging 19.9 PPG, and shooting 91.2 percent from the free throw line, 43.3 percent from the field, and 40.6 percent from three-point territory. 

NBA analysts, though, have criticized Redick's defense at the pro level, and this offseason he decided he'd had enough.

Redick worked hard on his defense before the '07-'08 season, causing Nick Adams of Orlandomagic.com to announce that, "Redick has impressed [me] so far with his defense on Jason Richardson" during a game against the Charlotte Bobcats.

Where has this gotten him?

Redick has played in a total of 58 games during these past two seasons, averaging 5.3 points and 1.0 rebounds while shooting 42 percent from the field and 38 percent from beyond the arc in about 13 scattered minutes. 

The Orlando Magic are currently 12th in the NBA in three-point percentage, but are second in three-point shots attempted. Shooting so often and only being 12th in the league doesn't sound so good to me.

Rashard Lewis and Hedo Turkoglu are the team's best three-point shooters, with Lewis shooting 38.6 percent (41st in the NBA) and Turk shooting 38.2 percent (47th). 

JJ's 35 percent this season would rank him 81st in the NBA, but he hasn't played enough minutes to be considered in the rankings on ESPN.

On Wednesday, Orlando GM Otis Smith spoke with the Orlando Sentinel and announced that J.J.'s trade value "is pretty high right now."

"What (Redick) can do—shoot—is at a premium in this league," Smith said. "We just happen to have an abundance of shooters. The fact of the matter is, we have players around him who give us something (defense) that he doesn't give us". 

Well, Otis, maybe if you let Redick play some real time, we can see his defense and his overall potential. 

Anyone who's with me—please add your name to this online petition