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This is the fourth in a series of player capsules from the Orlando Magic’s 2020-21 season:
Ignas Brazdeikis, forward
Games: 8. Games started: 0.
Per-game averages: 11.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.5 steals, 1.4 turnovers, 29.3 minutes.
Shooting: 44.3% FG, 40.7% 3FG, 66.7% FT
Contract status: Brazdeikis inked a 10-day contract on May 2 before the Magic signed him for the rest of the season when that deal expired. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent.
Top game: May 14 vs. 76ers — 21 points (9-for-12 shooting), 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 blocks, 1 turnover, 19.1 Game Score
The buzz: The Magic signed Brazdeikis, who was waived April 8 by the 76ers, to a 10-day contract on May 2 and he gave them an immediate lift, scoring 14 points in his debut the following night as Orlando beat Detroit 119-112 — the team’s last victory of the season. Brazdeikis eventually showed a mix of 3-point shooting, scoring in the paint and playmaking.
The left-handed Brazdeikis went 13-for-23 (56.5%) on shots at the rim and scored 42 of his 89 points in the paint. He shot 40.7% from behind the arc, going 11-for-27 and making a 3 in all eight games with the Magic. He also averaged 2.0 assists.
Brazdeikis often played out of position as the Magic dealt with depth issues in the frontcourt, but he often played bigger than his 6-foot-6 frame. He averaged 5.1 rebounds and posted four or more rebounds in six of his eight games. He also averaged 1.3 offensive rebounds.
In addition, Magic coach Steve Clifford liked Brazdeikis’ grittiness and praised the small forward for his high basketball IQ.
The future: Brazdeikis’ time with Orlando came in a fill-in role, but he made the most of it. Although eight games is a small sample size to get a handle on a player, Brazdeikis provided solid contributions off the bench as he showed some offensive and rebounding skill in addition to his hard-nosed play.
The Magic have no small forwards under contract for next season but could address that through the draft and free agency. With seven players 24 or younger, Orlando is more likely to seek out a veteran wing player — perhaps re-signing James Ennis — and it seems unlikely the team would give the 22-year-old Brazdeikis a more permanent deal.