Mo Bamba drawing interest from Rockets, Bulls

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I’ve identified Orlando’s Mo Bamba as my top target for Houston in free agency. I think the writing is on the wall for Bamba with the Magic. His jersey number, 5, has already been given to Paolo Banchero, the first overall pick. Wendell Carter recently signed an extension. There’s already a ton of length in Orlando’s front court. Adding Bamba to next season’s group, that looks crowded as is, is tricky. At 24, Bamba still fits Houston’s youthful timeline. He was a surprisingly effective floor spacer this past season, shooting an impressive 38.1 percent from behind the arc on four attempts per game. His rim protection is iffy at times but he’s still developing and was better than anyone on Houston’s roster in that area last season (although that isn’t saying a whole lot). Bamba is already generating interest from a slew of teams ahead of Thursday’s free agency — with Houston, Chicago and Orlando among them, sources said.
Source: Kelly Iko @ The Athletic

What’s the buzz on Twitter?

Jake Madison @NOLAJake
Locked On Pelicans is live!
🏀 Pelicans free agency RUMORS
🏀 Mo Bamba the top target for New Orleans?
🏀 Otto Porter Jr? Gary Payton II? How much money do the Pels have to spend?
🎧 https://t.co/BETlDzTh35
Watch on YouTube!
📺 https://t.co/4DBESaga40 pic.twitter.com/qxgJZe4Qqo9:49 AM

Jake Madison @NOLAJake
New Orleans Pelicans RUMOR Mo Bamba, Otto Porter, Gary Payton II
https://t.co/0eeS5zcEyJ pic.twitter.com/We48zUKF4w11:06 PM

Khobi Price @khobi_price
Key dates to know for the Orlando Magic ahead of July 1:
June 29 (tomorrow): Magic have until this date to tender qualifying offers to Mo Bamba, Bol Bol, Ignas Brazdeikis and Admiral Schofield. – 12:54 PM

Khobi Price @khobi_price
Mo Bamba training with Henry Woo Jr.
(🎥: henrywoojr/IG) pic.twitter.com/LAYhrBhn6m11:50 AM

More on this storyline

What happened? Did someone know something? Why was there a rush of money on Banchero? “I think the key with these sharp moves for drafts, whether they’re NFL or NBA, is that it’s all based on who is getting the scoop,” Austin Mock, a betting modeler and contributor to The Athletic, said. “From my perspective, the books didn’t want to come off Jabari as the favorite to go No. 1 because any big name media member was saying he was going to be the pick for the Magic. “Paolo started catching steam a couple days before the draft and I’m not sure if that was people getting lucky or if someone had info, but the market didn’t respect it too much.” -via The Athletic / June 29, 2022

“I think he’s an amazing player,” Doncic said about Banchero. “He has a great head coach, I know him very well, so I know he’s gonna get the opportunity to him to prove himself … I wish him all the luck.” -via Sports Illustrated / June 26, 2022

Jeff Weltman told the Orlando Sentinel that the Magic spent time with Banchero during the NBA’s mid-May draft combine in Chicago. “We’ve seen Paolo so many times,” Weltman told the Orlando Sentinel. “We’ve had so many touch points with him. We got to spend a lot of time with him in different facets. We got all of the data points we asked him to provide for us. We had everything we needed to feel we’re making a well-rounded decision.” -via Orlando Sentinel / June 26, 2022