Ex-Celtic Signs Contract With Eastern Conference Foe: Report

Ex-Celtic Moe Wagner signs with Magic

Getty Moritz Wagner #21 of the Washington Wizards dunks in front of Jaren Jackson Jr. #13 of the Memphis Grizzlies during the second half at Capital One Arena.

Moe Wagner has found a new home after an abbreviated stay in Beantown — and it just so happens to be in the Eastern Conference. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the big man has inked a deal with the Orlando Magic for the remainder of the 2020-21 season.

Wagner’s arrival in Central Florida will mark the third stop for the 6-foot-11-inch center/forward this season, who started the season with the Washington Wizards before being dealt to the Cs as part of a three-team deal at the trade deadline.

Expect Wagner to slot behind Wendell Carter Jr. and Mo Bamba in Orlando’s center rotation.

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Wagner Has Been Productive in Limited Action

In total, Wagner has appeared in 34 games this season, spanning across stints with both the Wizards and the Celtics. Neither team asked him to man major minutes, although he did see more floor time while in D.C. (15.0 mpg) as compared to Boston (6.8 mpg).

Combined he’s averaged 12.8 minutes per game on the year, showing well on a per-minute basis. The former first-round pick is currently averaging 5.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists while shooting 48.5% from the field. Wagner’s most prolific pro campaign came one season ago, where he notched career highs in points (8.7), rebounds (4.9) and field goal percentage (54.5).

Luke Kornet, the Last Man Standing

Wagner was part of a two-man acquisition, alongside fellow big Luke Kornet in the three-team trade that shipped off home-grown big man Daniel Theis to Chicago.

Here’s the entire breakdown of the deal to quickly jog your memory:

  • Boston Celtics receive:
    • Moe Wagner
    • Luke Kornet
  • Washington Wizards receive: 
    • Daniel Gafford
    • Chandler Hutchinson
  • Chicago Bulls receive: 
    • Daniel Theis
    • Javonte Green
    • Troy Brown
    • $1.3M (via BOS)
    • $250K (via WAS)

Theis may have changed threads but his play has remained mostly the same. The 29-year-old remains a consistent contributor, producing nearly identical numbers with the Bulls as he was with the Celtics this season. He’s also fresh off a 23-point outing — just two points off his career-high. With Robert Williams remaining hobbled with a knee injury, there’s no denying that Theis’ presence in the frontcourt would be a welcomed sight for Boston right about now.

Speaking of Williams, handing Time Lord more minutes was likely the key catalyst behind this trade from the Celtics’ point of view. For that reason, it would be a disservice to examine the deal from a pure player-for-player swap. With that said, as Wagner moves on to Orlando, the Celtics now only have Kornet to show for their decision to cut ties with not only Theis, but Jayson Tatum’s right-hand man Javonte Green as well.

The 7-foot-2-inch Kornet has flashed during his short time in Boston, flaunting impressive rim protection skills (11 blocks in 131 minutes) and the ability to serviceably stretch the floor (33.3% career 3-point shooter). Still, he’s struggled to truly crack Brad Stevens’ rotation with constant minutes thus far. After averaging approximately 14 mpg over his first six games with the Celtics, he’s seen that number drop by about five minutes over his last five games.


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