This past weekend should’ve been a celebration for the Orlando Magic and their prized rookie, Jonathan Isaac. If Isaac’s season had gone according to plan, he almost certainly would’ve attended All-Star Weekend in Los Angeles and played in the Rising Stars Challenge, an exhibition game for the NBA’s top first- and second-year players. Five of the top 10 picks from the 2017 draft class participated: Jayson Tatum, De’Aaron Fox, Lauri Markkanen, Frank Ntilikina and Dennis Smith Jr. Isaac, whom the Magic drafted sixth overall, didn’t participate. A stubborn right ankle injury has derailed his rookie season, forcing him to miss a total of 41 games, including the last 22. “I love most of the guys in my class, because I know them,” Isaac said. “Everybody’s time is different. Everybody has a different journey to greatness and everybody has a different road. So [I’m] just being happy for guys when their number is called and when their time is now. And my time is later.” For Isaac, a lanky 6-foot-10 forward, “later” should come soon. Although Isaac won’t play when the Magic host the New York Knicks on Thursday night, coach Frank Vogel said there’s a realistic chance Isaac will play for the Magic’s Lakeland G-League affiliate on Friday and/or Saturday. Team officials hope Isaac will return to NBA game action once he regains some comfort and rhythm in the G League.
Jonathan Isaac hopes to finish his injury-plagued rookie year strong
Orlando Sentinel | Feb 21