Magic’s Isaac becoming force
Orlando 7-footer emerging as one of NBA’s top athletic forwards.
CLEVELAND — Jonathan Isaac said he used take over games with an offensive mindset in high school. He was putting up 3-pointers, sometimes scoring at will. He wanted the ball in his hands and no one was stopping him.
“In high school, I was the man. I was the guy … I had 44 one night. I was putting them up. All 3s, too,” said Isaaac, the Orlando Magic’s third-year forward who now lets the game come to him. He was the man while at Naples Barron Collier High and Hollywood’s International School of Broward. The 7-foot Isaac also attended IMG Academy in Bradenton for one post-graduate season before playing a year at Florida State.
It was at FSU where the lanky, 6-foot-9, 210-pound athletic forward started to develop more of an all-around game. Now, at nearly 7 feet and 230 pounds, Isaac continues to evolve during what is essentially his second NBA season after his rookie campaign was limited to just 27 games due to a nagging ankle injury.
Isaac already is known as one of the best defenders in the league.
He still has his boyish charm and he nearly blushes at the mention of accolades. He gushes about Kevin Durant, his childhood idol who named Isaac one of the NBA’s rising stars during an interview in February.
“KD has always been my guy,” Isaac said Monday prior to the Magic’s 103-88 loss to the Pistons. It was two days after Isaac had scored a career-high 26 points during a loss at Indiana, an offensive outburst that was somewhat born out of necessity with two of the Magic’s top scorers — Nikola Vucevic and Aaron Gordon — out with ankle injuries.
Isaac will be looking to deliver more scoring Wednesday night when the Magic aim for their first road victory of the season at