Evan Fournier Trade Rumors: Nuggets 'Inquired' About Dealing for Magic SGMarch 23, 2021
The Denver Nuggets have checked in on the availability of Orlando Magic shooting guard Evan Fournier ahead of Thursday's trade deadline, according to Joe Vardon of The Athletic.
Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated recently noted the Magic only have two players who they consider untouchable—Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac—so a deal for Fournier could make sense for both sides depending on the return.
Denver has reportedly been offering starting guard Gary Harris in potential deals to help offset any salary concerns, per Vardon, and Harris could make sense for an Orlando club lacking backcourt depth—especially if Fournier is on the move.
Through 24 games this season, the 28-year-old Fournier is averaging 19.1 points, 3.6 assists and 3.1 rebounds.
Fournier's numbers are a bit more enticing than Harris' 9.7 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game and the Frenchman is a bit stronger behind the arc than Harris, knocking down 38.3 percent of his three-pointers (2.7 makes per game) to Harris' 32 percent (1.3 makes per game).
While Fournier is two years older than Harris, he's also finishing up a five-year, $85 million contract and is set to become a free agent after this season, so the Nuggets wouldn't be locked into a long-term deal should things go awry.
At 25-17 and holding onto fifth place in the Western Conference, Denver still has plenty of room to expand its margin for error, and finding reliable shooting will always cover up glaring issues elsewhere.
It just depends whether or not the Magic feel the Nuggets have enough desirable assets to make a deal work.
Orlando isn't trying to hide its hand this trade season. It wants to maximize the situation. With a roster loaded with Fournier, Nikola Vucevic, Chuma Okeke, Aaron Gordon and Michael Carter-Williams, there are plenty of depth pieces contenders may find valuable.
If Denver is going to convince Orlando to commit to a deal, it'll have to do so rather quickly as time becomes the biggest factor.