D.J. Augustin, Point Guard
Contract Status: 3 years/ $21.75 million
2016-17 stats: 78 games, 7.9 points, 1.5 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 37.7% FG, 34.7% 3PT, 81.4% FT
PER 36 stats: 78 games, 14.4 points, 2.7 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 37.7% FG, 34.7% 3PT, 81.4% FT
D.J. Augustin was brought in last season to be a steady presence behind Elfrid Payton. He is familiar with coach Frank Vogel and can shoot the deep ball. When Elfrid Payton had a tough start to the season Vogel elected to go with Augustin as the starter for a stretch of games. Augustin failed to secure the starting position but is still a very capable backup option. For that reason, it was a bit shocking when the Orlando Magic signed Shelvin Mack this off-season. While depth is a good problem to have, the amount of money tied up in the point guard position is a little too much. Augustin and Mack will cost the Magic virtually the same amount of money this season if you factor in the $1 million given to C.J. Watson after being waived.
Augustin now has competition for his backup point guard spot and quite possibly his spot on the Magic roster. The Magic need Augustin to hit open shots and take care of the ball while Payton takes a breather. At this point, he should be ahead of Mack in the rotation due to familiarity alone. As the Magic look to turn things around this season the Point Guard play behind Payton will be critical.
Strengths of D.J. Augustin
Strengths for D. J. Augustin have been the same since he entered the league. He is an above average shooter from the perimeter. Last season his 3 point field goal percentage took a dip. That could be a product of a lack of team shooting causing defenders to stick closer to D. J. more than previous seasons. Augustin was brought in to stretch the floor and be a counter to Elfrid Payton’s lack of shooting. However, being the only shooter on the floor at times diminishes that threat.
Augustin does a solid job of running an offense. He is a classic point guard who looks to get his teammates involved. Augustin is comfortable orchestrating the offense and finds his spots to score. For the most part, he takes care of the ball and makes the right decision when reading defenses.
Weaknesses of D.J. Augustin
Augustin’s biggest weakness is his defense. While Augustin is not a poor defender he has problems guarding bigger and faster players. Because of his size, most point guards have no problem taking Augustin into the post. His basketball IQ helps him to defend but even that is not enough. On the perimeter, Augustin does not have the length to disrupt passing lanes.
This is where Shelvin Mack has an advantage over Augustin. Mack has a wingspan on 6’7″ 1/2 while Augustin is only 6’3″ 1/2. Magic GM John Hammond has a track record of going for length and versatility. Augustin’s small stature makes him an easy target for opponents.
Expectations for D.J. Augustin
Next season D.J. Augustin will be in a battle for playing time with Shelvin Mack. The Magic really need shooting so Augustin has the upper hand in that department. If Augustin can take care of the ball he will be the primary backup to Elfrid Payton. Depending on the matchups Frank Vogel will adjust his lineups. If the Magic are in need of shooting or playing an older point guard Augustin will definitely get the nod. For opponents requiring a bigger defender at point guard, Vogel will go another way. D. J. Augustin will have his moments this season when he hits some big shots down the stretch. As a veteran, he will be great for the Magic coming off the bench.
Projected 2017-18 position: Reserve Point Guard