Originally written on Crossover Chronicles  |  Last updated 11/17/14
Orlando_magic_7c1d

There's nothing quite like hitting the ground running, eh Rob Hennigan? 

Hennigan probably still has stuff shipping to Orlando from Oklahoma City, but Orlando's new GM is not wasting any time blowing up the Magic roster and starting over.  In the midst of pursuing a trade to finally jettison Dwight Howard, the Magic have agreed to send their second most valuable asset, Ryan Anderson, to New Orleans.

Unwilling to match a lucrative offer sheet from the New Orleans Hornets that Anderson was about to sign, the Magic have agreed to send the restricted free agent to the Hornets in a sign-and-trade deal for center Gustavo Ayon, league sources said. The deal is expected to be finalized on Wednesday, the day when the NBA's moratorium period on player transactions ends.

The Magic have been in desperate financial straits for a few seasons. Otis Smith spent years taking on big contracts in an effort to appease his mega-star center and build a winner.

Neither goal, ultimately, was realized.

Dwight is on his way out, and the Magic are still without an NBA title. So it is now up to Hennigan to set the charges, push the plunger and watch the old team come crumbling down in a mushroom cloud. 

Anderson played for just more than $2 million last season in the final year of his rookie contract, but everyone knew he was due for a raise. And in today's financial climate and security of stretch exceptions, teams seem more willing to toss a few extra bucks at restricted free agents like Anderson... chalking it up to "the cost of doing business."

Teams know that they may be overpaying a bit, but if that's what it takes to pull a player away from his current team, so be it.  If he is a flash in the pan, the stretch exception allows them to cut the guy later and spread out the cap hit.  

Anderson is not likely to be a flash in the pan, though.  He is a good stretch 4 who can create a ton of space for your team by merely being a threat from long range. The Hornets will have Eric Gordon, whether he likes it or not, and Austin Rivers to take advantage of that space. They can also put him on the floor with Anthony Davis and give the rookie more room to maneuver rather than worry about a lot of double-teaming.  

Anderson will also create space for the Magic, who are already knocking on the luxury tax's door as currently constituted. There is no reason to cross that threshold for this Magic squad, so not paying Anderson for the next four years is a sound financial move.  

In Gustavo Ayon, they get a big guy with raw talent. They also get a guy with an un-guaranteed contract that, if he doesn't fit into Orlando's plans, can be waived without penalty. If the Magic chose to guarantee that $1.5 million, they then have a team option for 2013/14 for the same amount and then a $1.8 million qualifying offer the year after that. So the Magic have three separate opportunities to dump Ayon's contract starting this summer.  

Hennigan is going to have to continue to find that level of flexibility as he moves forward.  He'll dump Howard at some point this summer and gain more assets to either play with or trade.  This is all part of the first step of rebuilding the Magic.

You've got to tear it all down first, and that's what this move starts to do.

[follow]

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Take your pick: Colin Kaepernick or Derek Carr

Report: Bears to bench Jay Cutler, start Jimmy Clausen

Jim Harbaugh to Michigan speculation building

Heat lose a key player with McRoberts out for rest of season

Belichick: Ryan is 'buttering me up' with Hall of Fame praise

Marshall: Bears need to gel and do some kumbaya

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Ray McDonald investigated for possible sexual assault

Red Sox appear content with rotation despite lack of true ace

Iguodala gets technical for mocking Conley travel

Bo Pelini takes shot at Nebraska during introductory presser

Belichick: Patriots need to play better against the Jets

Rex Ryan doesn't want to get in trouble talking about Revis

12 candidates to replace Paul Chryst at Pitt

Brad Halsey claimed he was on cocaine for Bonds record HR

Wade Miley confident in health, diet after trade from D-Backs

When bowl results mean more for one school than another

Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson lead in 2014 athlete Google searches

Max Scherzer next domino to fall in free agent market

Another "Fire John Idzik' plane flies at Jets practice

Four can't-miss match-ups in NFL's Week 16

Report: Some Browns shunned Manziel during pregame

Making an attempt to understand Celtics' priorities

Gronk makes awkward sausage joke on 'Top Chef'

Walmart ripped for confusing Anthony/Lin doll

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

When bowl results mean more for one school than another

Four can't-miss match-ups in NFL's Week 16

RG3 quits social media for season

Each NFL division’s MVP

5 NFLers who must step up in Week 16

Most impressive college hoops teams

Five reasons why FSU is going to win the CFB Playoff

Boxer admits to dive in Rourke bout

FCC heard about Brady's swearing?

Embracing the hate of the Eagles-Cowboys Rivalry

DeSean Jackson mocks Eagles

Andrew Hawkins defends shirt

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.