The Orlando Magic reportedly extended a four-year, $32 million offer to swingman Evan Fournier, which he turned down prior to the start of the season.
Fournier, 23, has shown flashes (currently averaging a career-best 19 PPG) after spending the summer getting in the best shape of his life.
The Magic acquired the Frenchman in a trade with the Denver Nuggets in 2014.
Per Yahoo! Sports:
The Magic re-signed (Tobias) Harris to a four-year, $64 million deal a year after being unable to secure a rookie extension, and he remains a cornerstone and significant talent at 23 in his fifth season. Orlando similarly held extension talks for Fournier in October. […] Fournier rejected a four-year, $32 million offer from the Magic, league sources said, deciding to test restricted free agency in July. Ultimately, the NBA’s projected salary cap increase in 2016 and his upside produced an easy decision for Fournier.
“To be honest, I did not even expect to be extended,” Fournier said. “I had no pressure about that. If there was something good, I will take it. If not, I can wait until the summer. I don’t have to worry about it and make the wrong decision. I have confidence in myself and the season that I’ll have. The contract will take care of itself. You can’t go on the court and think about a deal. You must be focused and you must have the right mindset.”
Fournier laughs when reminded about those moments of huddling with teammates in France to deliver a request: give me the ball. His playing time fluctuated with the Denver Nuggets and a split was inevitable between the team and its 20th overall selection in the 2012 draft, with a trade to the Orlando Magic opening an NBA role for him. And now, Fournier’s skills and size – his shooting, craftiness and 6-foot-7 frame – have synchronized with his mind to make him the Magic’s leading scorer. [….] “I have to keep working on this challenge of being a top option, one I have to accept to try to lead the team and go back to the playoffs,” Fournier said. “My goal is never to be a No. 1 option. I just want to play as good as I can, and help Orlando go to the playoffs and have a great season. I don’t think about any numbers or stats. When I was 19, I had the ball in my hands in every close game and it was a learning experience for me as a pro. I was already the leading scorer of my French team the year before I got drafted. It was my first time being the leader of a team, and it’s helping me now. I’ve learned so much from it. Everyone pushes me to be the best I can be. I don’t have any limits. Whatever happens, I want to give my best.”