With more than two months still to go before the start of the 2015-16 NBA regular season, it can be time for only one thing: regular season win total predictions for next season! And according to the aggregate mind of ESPN.com's forecast panel, Orlando is in for a rough go of it.
On the bright side, the 30-win prediction for the Magic is a five-win increase over last season. But 30 wins would still have Orlando in the bottom three in the Eastern Conference.
Where might Orlando find that five-win improvement, and how can the Magic exceed expectations? A stellar rookie season from Mario Hezonja would be a good start, as would a healthy year for Aaron Gordon, who in many facets will still be a rookie next season. Continued growth from Victor Oladipo and Elfrid Payton seems a sure bet, and the presence of veteran head coach Scott Skiles should help as well.
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If everything clicks, the Magic could push toward a double-digit improvement in wins over last season. For now, five wins seems like a baseline at best.