After clearing one level of uncertainty about his future, Orlando Magic shooting guardJ.J. Redick now faces another level of uncertainty.
By not waiving Redick before 11:59 Sunday night, the team guaranteed Redick’s entire $6.1 million salary for the 2012-13 season. Had the team waived him before the deadline, Redick would not have been owed one penny, and his salary figure would have been erased from the Magic’s books.
Redick obviously is happy about the development, but at the same time, he knows that he will be an attractive trade chip in the months ahead because his contract will expire at the end of the season.
“I wanted to be back in Orlando when the [2011-12] season ended,” Redick told the Orlando Sentinel in a phone interview. “I obviously wanted my last year to become guaranteed. This past week, I heard a lot of different things, so there was a little bit of uncertainty going into the weekend. I’m glad that there is now clarity and I can prepare for this season, and I’ll be a free agent next summer.”
Yes, more uncertainty.
With the Magic seemingly on the verge of trading Dwight Howard and seemingly about to start a massive rebuilding project, veteran players entering the primes of their careers will face the temptation to play for contending teams.
Redick, 28, is used to playing for winning teams in high school, college and in the pros.
He should have options in the future.
He has drawn interest from contending teams before, signing a three-year, $19 million offer sheet from the Chicago Bulls two summers ago.
For the moment, though, he’s monitoring the news about potential Magic roster moves and he said he’s looking forward to meeting draft picks Andrew Nicholson and Kyle O’Quinn.
Asked if he feels “unease” about the team’s direction, he answered, “I think that there’s some unease, obviously, as a player. But, to me, obviously, I want to know who the coach is, and we’ll make the team work with whatever we’re given. The roster construction is completely out of my control.
“I’ve been paying attention because my team is involved and my teammates are involved. I’m not sure what’s going to happen. Obviously, whatever does, I hope it makes the Magic better in the long run.”
Redick and his wife, Chelsea, are spending this summer in Manhattan — a choice they made during the 2011-12 season.
“There’s not many opportunities in life to really take advantage of something [like this],” he said. “We’ve always have talked about living in New York for a summer, and this summer seemed like a great opportunity to do it. I’m lucky. I’ve found a great trainer up here, and it’s been fantastic so far.
“I love the subway. I take it all the time. I actually prefer it over cabs.”
Redick and his trainer, Adam Cobb, are doing less weight-training than Redick has done in the past. The goal, Redick said, is to become a “more fluid player.”
Redick has tweeted about his workouts, and when he’s on Twitter, he notices what fans are saying about the Magic.
“I see that there’s some frustration right now from the fans,” he said. “I just ask that they be patient. I thank them again for their continued support and love. They’re wonderful, and obviously, we need them really, really bad right now.”