Magic's Nik Vucevic heading for a big payday

Surprisingly, the bitter faithful have a budding big man to support when Dwight returns on Tuesday night.

National pride?

Magic PG Beno Udrih told the Sentinel he will not play for the Slovenian national team this summer — and appears finished with the experience. The Euro championships will be held in his native country in September for the first time.

"I'm not 19 anymore," said Udrih, 30. "I have a wife now. It's family time for me."

Udrih also cited the grueling training after playing an NBA season and plans to rest this offseason.

Playing for his homeland hasn't always gone so smoothly for him. Udrih walked out on Slovenia's training camp before the start of the 2010 FIBA World Championship after a dispute with coach Memi Becirovic over his role.

Former Magic C Marcin Gortat, now with Phoenix, also might not play for Poland. He recently told TalkBasket.net: "I can tell you one thing: I'm going to definitely consider not going to the national team again and not playing another 20 games in the offseason."

Booed in Orlando

Howard will be subjected to booing like he's never heard before when he returns Tuesday night.

We look back at some boofests at either Amway Arena or Amway Center throughout years (excluding obvious targets Shaq, Penny, T-Mac):

1.Oct. 28, 2010: It's not surprising that Commissioner David Stern is booed. What was shocking was that Orlando fans jeered Stern on the night of the grand opening of Amway Center as he stood at center court to announce ... that the city had been awarded the NBA All-Star Game.

2.Dec. 21, 2007: Magic fans booed the home team after a 113-94 loss to the Utah Jazz. "I feel bad for our fans," Stan Van Gundy said. "I would have booed a lot louder than that."

3.Nov. 10, 2007: Injuries thwarted Grant Hill's seven-year stay in Orlando. He returned as a Phoenix Sun and was booed during pregame warm-ups. Then-Suns forward Shawn Marion said: "What can you do? He was hurt here his whole career. He played hurt. I felt bad for the man."

P.S.

An update of key players the Magic-Bucks trade (as of Friday): SG Redick is averaging 13.3 points and 2.5 assists in six games, with no starts, for Milwaukee. Tobias Harris is averaging 16.7 points and 4.9 rebounds per game in seven games, with no starts, for Orlando.

bschmitz@tribune.com

 

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